Baby Monitors are insane. Ridiculous. We were super lucky that some friends gave us their baby monitor to help us get started. It was less than a year old and really has given us a chance to see what is good and bad in a baby monitor. And there are some ridonkulous baby monitors out there in the market.
Now, why am I looking at the market? Well, as we’re beginning to transition Remy to his crib (he’s outgrowing the bassinet already) we’ve run into a snag (apparently common with the monitor we were given) where the parental unit battery doesn’t hold a charge and doesn’t want to charge. Quite a few Amazon reviews complain the battery sucks after a year or so. So it goes 2-3 hrs (withOUT video) and is dying. And you have to basically hold the charging cord in to get it to charge. This wasn’t an issue when we really only used the monitor during naps (and we actually didn’t realize the “only 2-3h charge” part). And you can eventually get the monitor plugged in at just the perfect angle.
So I’m evaluating if there’s something else on the market or if we want to consider just getting a new version of this one – because it is a decent monitor minus the stupid-battery-issue. But one of the things reviews do that bugs me is harp on things I don’t care about – and prior to the past few nights (trying to rely on a monitor) I didn’t know if they were things I should care about.
So here is my needs/wants list.
I want video. This isn’t technically a need, but it’s something I am more than willing to pay extra for. Remy dreams, so sometimes the huffing and twitching at night is a dream – sometimes he’s awake. Literally the only way to know is to see if his eyes are open. So this is a need because it will mean I don’t have to necessarily get out of bed.
The ability to get the noise of crying when he’s awake/making noise. The Nest Cam comes off my list immediately because it doesn’t have a prolonged alert or a “turn on the noise and make me listen to my baby cry” feature. I’m a relatively heavy sleeper – I sleep through alerts on my phone all the time. I need more than just another noise – I need REMY’S noise.
Lastly, multiple parental monitors (we have a 2-story house + basement – having 1 on the main floor and one upstairs would be AWESOME). I don’t object to “pay for 2nd monitor,” but a lot don’t have the option!! This ads a huge plus in the column for monitors that have a phone app – every one I’ve looked at allows multiple monitors if not simultaneous.
Anything here is optional. Mostly.
IF it plays music, I want to be able to pick my own music. (A) Everyone seems to put on Brahms Lullaby and its already old to me. I know Remy probably doesn’t care and it’s free for manufacturers… but bah! if it’s a feature you want me to pay for, I want to put my own music on because (B) Eli & I picked Fear Not This Night from Guild Wars 2 as Remy’s lullaby. I started singing it the last 2 months of pregnancy pretty much every day. Remy responds to it now. When he’s screaming his head off, this is the song we’ll play and it calms him down. No manufacturer would default that on their list and if the monitor connects to my wifi – there is no reason I shouldn’t be able to use my Google play or iTunes or whatever service I choose.
I would prefer wifi. We have enough gadgets which clutter the airwaves and live in a dense enough area of airwaves that I already know just the 30ish feet from the monitor (the current monitor uses radio(??) waves) it begins to struggle with connection. I know it’s because there’s just too much other stuff and so – wifi preferred.
Zoom. It would be nice to zoom in if I can’t see well/am half asleep.
Temperature tracking. This is a feature I would drop early, but it is nice. Is he too hot? Too cold? (He HATES being cold). It’s on our current monitor and I find it a nifty piece of information. I don’t need it. I doubt I would even notice if wasn’t there until I remembered to look for it. BUT, if it comes down to two and one has temp and the other doesn’t, it would be a tie-breaker.
I don’t care about…
So here is a quick list of features that won’t sway me for or against a monitor:
- Pan and tilt. Don’t have it now and haven’t needed/wanted it.
- Baby Vitals. This might be dangerous for me as I might get a little obsessive over them.
- Looks. Some of them say it’s easy to hide or “aesthetically pleasing” and I couldn’t care less.