A Review Of A Great Baby Monitor Based on Personal Experience
In this article I just want to share with people what I believe to be the best baby monitor on the market and provide a critical review of it, listing both the positives and negatives about the product. Like for many other parents, the birth of our first child brought us down so many unknown avenues with endless things that need to be bought in order to provide for a baby's wellbeing, happiness and above all safety. The stuff you need to buy is mind-boggling and dependent on who you ask you will be given totally opposite opinions on what is the most important and best.
One of the many things that finds its way onto a must have list is a baby monitor, and the choices here are quite large. Before I looked into buying one of these, I only ever thought their function would be to transmit audio from the baby's room to a wireless remote device, just like a walkie talkie I had when I was a kid. Little did I know that the features included in many monitoring stations go way beyond just transmitting audio.
One very common feature on baby monitors is the provision of a video feed in addition to the audio. At first I thought this would be the perfect solution, as it would allow us as parents to look at our baby and make sure that everything was ok. The idea was that should the baby be silent for a longer period of time, I know this was wishful thinking, we would be able to check the video and make sure everything was OK.
For most, or I should say all, parents the fear of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) also known as cot death, is probably one of the biggest fears. So we initially thought that we were onto a winner with a video monitor that would allow us to regularly check in on the wellbeing of our baby.
It wasn't though until friends recommended us the Angelcare Baby movement and sound monitor and are we grateful for that recommendation.
The Positive Features
The biggest feature and advantage of this monitor is the movement sensor which is able to detect the slightest movements of even very small babies, which includes the faint movement of a baby breathing. Should the sensor not detect any movement at all for 20 seconds it starts to sound an alarm on the nursery unit as well as the remote unit.
It is absolutely incredible how much peace of mind this one feature gives us. When we heard of friends with newborns spending half the night checking up on a sleeping baby, who after replacing their baby monitor with the AngelCare monitor, were able to go to sleep without worries, we really knew that we were on to something. Until you bring home your first baby you just don't know how big a worry it is.
The way motion detector works is through a motion detection plate that is placed in the baby's bed under the mattress. The best way to describe the detector unit is by imagining two square plastic plates with one suspended above the other with springs. As your baby breathes in and out its body will move ever so slightly, triggering a similar movement in the detection plate.
In the first day or two, it can happen that the device raises a false alarm, which is one of the negatives of this product that I will talk about shortly. However, this can be rectified by adjusting the sensitivity on the nursery unit, but this may take a few attempts.
Another great feature is the backup batteries in the nursery unit, which became apparent to us when we had a power cut during the night which went unnoticed until the next morning, but the baby monitor continued to work. Should the batteries run low in the nursery unit while there is no power input, the device also sounds an alarm to warn you of this.
The Negative Features
There are really only three negatives I can think of about this device. The first is that the thermometer often seems to be wrong, which we have confirmed with a separate unit. So I wouldn't be totally reliant on this feature when ensuring that the room temperature is not too high or low.
The second negative I already briefly mentioned. It is the fact that for the first days of use you can get false alarms when trying to get the sensitivity right. For a new born I would suggest setting the sensitivity to quite a low setting, as your baby's light weight will mean that the detection plate will not be fully depressed. Even very subtle movements can be therefore be easily detected. Best thing though is to experiment a bit with this setting to get it right, just be warned that you can get the alarm going off, which will wake you and possibly your baby.
The last negative item is the static noise that tends to come from the remote device. When our baby first moved into her own room we kept the remote device turned on at night. For whatever reason, the monitor transmits very short bursts of static noise every couple of seconds which can be very irritating. It took us a few nights to figure out that if you turn down the volume control to its lowest on the remote device, the static noise disappears, while at the same time we were still able to hear our baby's cries.
One thing that really convinced us to buy the AngelCare baby monitor was the sheer number of positive reviews on Amazon. Just like our own experience, most Amazon reviews are especially pleased with the piece of mind provided. Also having read some of the negative reviews, they often seemed to be about issues with devices not working straight out of the box or delivery issues, but you might as well check out the reviews yourself to get additional opinions.