A parents concern for their baby’s well-being doesn’t stop when the lights go out at night. Rather, worry seems to kick-in when all you can think about is whether your baby is too hot, too cold or how on earth did they manage to do a 180 degree turn in the cot!
Baby monitors were definitely designed to beat (and occasionally exacerbate) these endless sleepless night concerns but are they everything they are hyped up (and priced up) to be?
The Uniden Digital Wireless Baby Video Camera is a sleek and simple design and a video monitor really is a very handy device that allows you to easily check on your baby’s safety without having to enter the room.
The camera includes a zoom with six settings (you can check if your baby’s eyes are open it zooms that close!) and a musical tunes option that ranges from a sweet lullaby to a slightly strange and excessively upbeat oompa band tune (definitely not the one we choose for settling our baby!).
There is also a ‘talk’ option that allows you to ‘walkie talkie’ your baby as the Uniden website describes it, plus a night light switch which is handy when your phone isn’t within reach.
There is good range on the device so you can go quite some distance before the video reception cuts-out on the monitor. I was unable to find the exact range on the Uniden website but the range is good enough that I can take it with me to hang out the washing in our backyard.
The monitor also has a room temperature display but I am not convinced that it is entirely accurate because the monitor reading and my other two room thermometer devices (No i’m not paranoid, they were gifts, i swear!) rarely match. Perhaps the thermostat is poorly positioned on the camera device.
The video monitor also self-adjusts to day and night vision which makes it easy to see your baby in the monitor at all times.
DIMENSIONS AND MECHANISMS
The camera and monitor devices come with adaptors and an inbuilt (but non-replaceable) battery in the monitor to turn it into a wireless device.
HOWEVER, and it’s a big however, the battery life is terrible.
My monitor was less than a year old when the monitor battery died so I can no longer use it as a wireless device and it must be plugged in at all times now. A quick scour of the internet brings up a few forums with similar complaints from users of this product suggesting this may be an ongoing design issue for the brand.
Aside from that…
The camera is on an adjustable clamp with a swivel head which is great for turning the device to get baby back into view as they move around the cot. The monitor unit also has a belt clip and a stand, maximising your ability to carry it around with you which is super handy.
The monitor unit is approximately 12.5cm h x 7cm w x 3 cm d.
VALUE FOR MONEY
I purchased this product for $150 AUSD placing it in the middle price range between the cheaper audio-only monitors and the more expensive multi-pack video/audio devices.
If the battery-life were better on this product I would say that it’s well worth the money. Granted I have not yet tested other monitor brands but given that my device is no longer wireless (a major selling point for this product!), and there doesn’t appear to be a replacement battery option available, I would say that this product is not the best value for money if you really need or want a wireless device for the longer term.
But for the first year, this product was brilliant.
Having a video camera on your baby monitor really does offer you peace of mind in being able to check on your baby’s safety without having to physically be in the room at all times.
The added features on this product such as the night light and music option are also good little bonuses that can help in the process of settling baby.
For the time that the monitor worked as expected it was a great product which I couldn’t fault, but the biggest let-down has been the poor quality battery that gives this product little longevity.
Once the battery dies, what seems to be a premature death, the ‘wireless’ function becomes redundant and that’s a real shame.
Would I buy a video monitor again? Yes, I really like having the video option.
Would I buy this specific brand again, perhaps, but I think I will try another type first.
AT A GLANCE: The real world issues
|Is it easy to use?||Yes. There is a plug and battery option to make it wireless.|
|The biggest pro?||The wireless design with practical features like the carry clip that allow you to carry it around easily.|
|The biggest con?||The battery life on the monitor is very poor and there does not appear to be a replacement option. The monitor can continue to work while plugged in but the wireless option is lost once the battery dies.|
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