Best Baby Monitors to Help You Keep a Watchful Eye on Your Little One
You want baby to be safe and sound at all times. It’s natural and normal to feel some level of anxiety about your little one’s well-being. Of course, this stress can mount when baby is sleeping in another room. A reliable baby monitor ensures that you’re able to securely keep an eye on your sweetie during nap time and overnight rest—or, really, anytime you need to step away for a moment (hey, parents need bathroom breaks too!). Of course, not all baby monitors are created equal. There are lots of feature nuances, and starting your search for the best baby monitor to suit your needs can feel daunting. Fortunately, we’re here to help with tips, explanations and a nifty roundup of our favorite options. Whether you’re looking for the best non-WiFi baby monitor or a super-efficient portable option, we’ve got you covered.
In this article:
Best Video Baby Monitor
Best WiFi Baby Monitor
Best Non-WiFi Baby Monitor
Best Smart Baby Monitor
Best Long-Range Baby Monitor
Best Dual Baby Monitor
Best Split-Screen Baby Monitor
Best Portable Baby Monitor
Most Secure Baby Monitor
Best Audio Baby Monitor
Best Baby Monitor Under $100
A baby monitor is a two-piece device where the transmitter stays in baby’s room and the receiver remains near a parent, who is then able to monitor their little one—through sound and/or video—while they’re asleep in their crib. When shopping for the best baby monitor for your family, consider first what you’d like to accomplish with a monitor. Do you need just a quick peek here and there or constant, 360-degree surveillance with add-ons like ambient temperature control and sleep-quality tracking? Are you hoping to simply see baby or to hear them as well? These are questions that, once answered, can help you decide which of the best baby monitor options should top your list.
There are pros and cons to just about any type of baby monitor, so you’ll first want to establish which one is right for you.
These are generally the simplest options available. And while video monitors have emerged as the more popular choice, an audio monitor doesn’t give you the option of nonstop staring. (That can be good or bad!)
Pros: This is generally the least expensive type of monitor
Cons: With just an audio component, there’s no way to see baby
Need to be able to watch baby’s chest rise and fall? A video baby monitor gives you the ability to see and hear your sleeping beauty.
Pros: You’ll be able to see baby; most options provide an audio function as well
Cons: This type of baby monitor typically comes with a higher price tag than audio monitors
Want to be able to see what’s happening in baby’s room while you’re out and about? Most WiFi monitors pair with an app—so you can keep an eye on things even when you’re not at home.
Pros: These options generally offer enhanced functionality and sharing capabilities; many connect to an app on your phone so you can watch from anywhere
Cons: These are more vulnerable to potential security threats
Of course, an internet connection comes with security risks. And if you’ve ever gotten scared by unexpected interference on a device (it can be freaky!), a non-WiFi option might be the safer bet for you.
Pros: This option is less prone to hacking
Cons: Limited functionality and features—for example, you won’t have the ability to take photos and/or videos of baby
These options are typically WiFi-enabled, and often offer extra monitoring features that provide insights on baby’s sleep patterns and overall well-being.
Pros: This option has all the bells and whistles for complete monitoring, tracking and sharing
Cons: A wealth of data can make parents hypervigilant. There are also safety concerns: Per the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), you shouldn’t rely on a baby-monitoring device that provides health-related data; a smart monitor also makes you more vulnerable to security breaches
If you plan on taking your monitor with you wherever you go, portability will be your number one priority.
Pros: Great for traveling and on-the-go parents
Cons: Limited functionality
What to consider when shopping for the best baby monitor
Today’s best baby monitors are far more advanced than the basic monitors of your parents’ generation. And that’s mostly a good thing! High-definition video monitoring is becoming the norm, and many baby monitors are now app-enabled or have WiFi capabilities. Even basic audio monitors have stepped up their game by implementing technology to eliminate interference and boost security. (If you’ve ever heard your neighbors chatting through your baby monitor, you’ll appreciate this change! Digital enhanced cordless telecommunications (DECT) technology also prevents super-creepy baby monitor hackers from spying on baby—or you! What’s more, there are some important factors to keep in mind when shopping for the best baby monitor to meet your needs. These include:
- Battery life
- Add-on cameras (to monitor more than one child or space)
Still need help distinguishing which are the good baby monitors—and which ones aren’t worth your time and money? We understand! There’s a lot to choose from, and given that baby monitors perform a super-important job, we want to help you select the one that provides the ultimate peace of mind when it comes to baby’s safety and security. We’ve rounded up several of the best baby monitors on the market, from high-end, do-it-all monitors to affordable but effective audio monitors (and everything in between). You’re sure to find your digital nap companion on the list below!
Why settle for just hearing baby when you can see them too? Parents everywhere breathed a collective sigh of relief when the video baby monitor was first introduced, with a camera in baby’s room transmitting video to the receiver Mom or Dad kept by their side. After all, it’s reassuring to actually see that silence means a sleeping baby rather than Sharpie on the walls. (Yes, in some ways video baby monitors are even more important during the toddler years!) With thousands of Amazon reviewers giving this monitor a near five-star rating, we’re happy to include the Infant Optics DXR-8 Pro video baby monitor on our list of best baby monitors. Parents rave about its crystal-clear picture in both light and darkness, thanks to the high-def video display, and its game-changing interchangeable wide-angle lens for larger viewing areas (sold separately). The DXR-8 Pro also has the ability to pan and zoom across baby’s room without parents having to enter the room and move or adjust the camera. And the range is now an impressive 1,000 feet, cutting down on connectivity issues. All these features add up to make it the best video baby monitor available.
- Large 5-inch screen that’s still lightweight and portable
- The patent-pending active noise reduction feature filters out background noises so you can hear baby better
- Offers 100 percent digital privacy
- Not WiFi-enabled or app-compatible
- Interchangeable optical lenses sold separately-
- Batteries required
WiFi baby monitors are the latest innovation in high-tech baby gear, and they’re super convenient. A baby monitor with WiFi allows you to connect anywhere that has Internet service or Bluetooth capability—and the monitor can often be controlled remotely using a smartphone or computer. This functionality makes the WiFi baby monitor great for traveling (unless you’re heading to a remote location). Safety tip: No matter what connection you use, be sure that it’s a secure connection to prevent your monitor from being hacked. When you opt for the Miku Pro, our 2021 Best of Baby award winner for the best WiFi baby monitor, nap time becomes a virtually stress-free experience. It’s the only monitor that can register and record baby’s breathing, temperature and movement without a wearable device. Track baby’s sleep stats in real time with the accompanying app, and never wonder again whether an external factor is keeping baby from getting some much-needed shuteye. FYI, embedded security features also mean enhanced protection for your data and privacy for you and baby.
- Smart features to track baby’s breathing, sounds and sleep patterns
- Smartphone-compatible to alert you of any changes to nursery conditions
- Plays original sleep sounds and lullabies to calm baby
- Some customers report connectivity and app difficulties
- Higher price point than other models
- Sensitive motion alarm can be inaccurate at times
If you don’t have an internet connection—or don’t feel comfortable with the potential for hackers, a non-WiFi baby monitor is likely the right choice for you. Luckily, today’s non-WiFi monitors don’t ask you to settle for second best just because you’d like to remain offline. With the Eufy SpaceView baby monitor (another Best of Baby winner!), you no longer have to sacrifice quality if you’re lacking a high-speed internet connection. This completely offline monitor touts most of the bells and whistles of its connected counterparts, like razor-sharp images, clear sound and even night-vision technology. Expansive pan and tilt capabilities, and an available second lens mean you never have to wonder about baby’s well-being during naps.
- Large 5-inch, 720p display screen
- Lens can pan and tilt for optimal viewing
- Stable FHSS connection for real-time communication even if your home’s internet connection is down
- Split-screen mode isn’t supported if multiple cameras are in use
- Not compatible with Micro SD cards
What’s better than a baby monitor that can do it all? A baby monitor that can do it all and deliver results to your smartphone, of course! Perfect for new parents or anyone who wants the most peace of mind possible, a smart baby monitor is worth its price tag, providing real-time monitoring and data tracking during baby’s snoozes. The Nanit Pro complete baby monitoring system comes with everything you need. Right out of the box, you’ll receive a camera and monitoring system that boasts sharp images; clear sound using a two-way microphone and ample visibility with pan, tilt and zoom capabilities. Take things to the next level with smart sheets and an accompanying wearable breathing monitor for baby, so you can track breathing rate (of course, don’t exclusively rely on this information). A robust app does much more than just track baby’s sleep stats: The Insights feature gives you customized sleep advice based on baby’s activity—and there’s even a place to store your very own memories, like the first time baby sleeps through the night. Share these moments with friends and family on the app as well.
- Provides baby’s sleep stats and a highlight reel every morning
- 1080p HD video quality, day and night
- Comes with a stand, a smart sheet and a breathing band
- Users report that the volume of alert notifications sent to their smartphones could be overwhelming at times
- Breathing band included only fits babies up to 3 months old
- Higher price point than other models
One of the biggest concerns with a baby monitor is going out of range and not being able to hear baby crying for you. Talk about a case of mom guilt! When shopping for the best long-range baby monitor, understand that the range listed on the box doesn’t account for walls or doors; it’s a line-of-sight range. So, although you may not actually be able to travel 1,000 feet away from baby, you should be able to head to the basement to do laundry or be outside in the yard without worrying about missing baby’s calls. For a long-range video monitor, the Philips Avent SCD-843 provides top-notch video capability and solid features with a range of 980 feet outdoors and 150 feet indoors.
- Remote capabilities to turn on the nightlight, select lullabies and talk to baby
- Battery life of 10 hours
- Complete with a customizable temperature sensor
- Audio can be hypersensitive to unimportant sounds
- The operating range is dependent on your surroundings
- Customers report charging difficulties
Just because you’re pulling double diaper duty doesn’t mean you need to buy two separate baby monitor systems. If you’re a twin mom or have two close in age, simply look for a monitor that can accommodate add-on cameras. The Babysense Video Monitor comes with two digital cameras right out of the box (and, FYI, it can handle up to four!), making this the best baby monitor for twins—or a household with multiple nappers. With the push of a button, you can toggle between views of your littles, even if they’re in separate rooms. Plus, this monitor features digital pan, tilt and zoom capabilities; two-way communication; room-temperature monitoring and a 900-foot range.
- Complete with a built-in adjustable nightlight
- Auto Infrared night vision for 24/7 monitoring
- Loop setting to see both camera views in full every 10 seconds
- Audio hypersensitivity isn’t ideal for those who use white noise
- The zoom feature can result in grainy images
- Customers report inadequate battery life
Got multiple littles to keep an eye on? Opt for a monitor with split- or even quad-screen viewing (yes, you can see up to four children in separate rooms all at once!). It allows you to receive images from several cameras on the same screen simultaneously.
- Perfect for parents with more than one little one
- Includes a camera wall mount
- Video and audio for up to 1,000 feet
- Highly sensitive noise detector
- Cameras need to be individually reset after power interruptions
It’s hard enough traveling with kids, so when you’re away from home, you’ll want to bring along a baby monitor that’s reliable and flexible. A long-range device is also a plus—especially if baby will be sleeping further away from you than they normally do. For these reasons, the Evoz Vision tops our list as the best travel baby monitor. The WiFi-enabled monitor allows more than one person to check on baby—a nice feature when you’re traveling to visit family and friends; just grant grandparents or sitters access to the app. Another great travel feature: It has an unlimited range. Plus, it uses cry-detection algorithms to distinguish cries from other noises, and will alert you via text message or email when baby cries. Just make sure you’ll have WiFi at your destination.
- Connects securely to iOS and Android devices so you can soothe baby remotely
- Uses patented alert technology to distinguish baby cries from other noises
- Dependent on WiFi
- Visible blue indicator light can cause sleep disruptions at times
If security is top of mind for you when it comes to your baby monitor, you’ll want to choose one that invests in and understands the importance of cybersecurity. The Cubo AI is an absolute stand-out when it comes to security. It’s cybersecurity-certified by the Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association (CTIA), giving you peace of mind that your data is just as safe and secure as your sleeping baby. Strong features like real-time alerts, razor-sharp HD images and built-in sleep-analytics tracking make this one of our favorite top-rated baby monitors on the market.
- Sweet bird-shaped design
- Recognizes when baby’s face is covered and notifies parents
- Features bank-level encryption and two-factor authentication to ensure data protection
- Some customers report connectivity issues
- App can be difficult to use
- Unable to playback notification videos sent to smart devices
There are many reasons to look for an audio baby monitor—price and portability are just a few—but for the best audio baby monitor, choose a digital model that uses DECT technology rather than an old-school analog model. You’ll enjoy greater security and less interference. The VTech Safe & Sound DM221 is a digital audio model with great reviews and lots of features at an affordable price point. It functions like a set of walkie-talkies with its two-way communication, and it’s portable to boot—making it one of the top baby monitors for travel.
- Parent units feature a five-level sound indicator
- Nightlight, so you can easily see baby without disturbing their sleep
- Affordable price point
- Customers report issues with the monitor’s volume levels
- Battery life can be unreliable
When video baby monitors first hit the scene, they were all incredibly expensive. Nowadays though, you can get a really nifty option without splurging. The Hello Baby monitor system offers a remote pan-tilt-zoom camera, a 3.2-inch LCD screen, infrared night-vision, two-way audio, room-temperature monitoring and built-in lullabies for $90. Great functionality and ultimate reassurance doesn’t have to break the bank. There’s a reason this baby monitor has more than 12,000 five-star reviews on Amazon.
- Rotates 355° horizontally and 120° vertically so that you always have a clear view of baby
- Uses its own encrypted wireless signal rather than WiFi
- Automatic night vision capabilities
- Relatively short battery life
- Customers report occasional monitor screen glitches