DECT digital baby monitors are slowly making their way into more homes and at lower prices. Should you buy a baby monitor with DECT technology, or will a regular digital baby monitor do? What is the best baby monitor to choose if you go with a DECT model?
DECT stands for Digital Enhanced Cordless Communications. It's basically a special frequency, 1.9 GHz, that is reserved for voice technologies. Other digital baby monitors might operate on the 2.4 GHz frequency. They're encrypted, so you... have a layer of security versus an analog baby monitor, and the neighbors won't hear your baby crying when they pick up their cordless phone. However, there could be other devices in your home that use that same frequency that could interfere with the digital baby monitor. One common culprit? Wireless routers.
The uncommon frequency of the DECT digital baby monitor is its biggest advantage. It's really unlikely that you have other things in your home that operate on the DECT frequency. 3G/4G data signals have the potential to interfere with DECT, but this doesn't seem to be causing real-world problems among DECT baby monitor users at this time. In a test by Consumer Reports, a DECT phone and a DECT baby monitor did not seem to cause interference with one another, though, so even if you have other DECT devices, you might not encounter a problem.
You may see some baby monitors labeled as using DECT 6.0 security technology. It's still the same 1.9 GHz frequency. In the U.S., all DECT baby monitors operate at the same frequency. Video baby monitors use a different frequency for the picture. While many video monitors have secure digital signals, you will not usually see them labeled as using DECT technology.
Should You Buy a DECT Digital Baby Monitor?
If you know that you want a digital baby monitor to take advantage of the security features, and you want to reduce the chances of any interference from other electronic devices in your home, a DECT digital baby monitor could be a good choice for you. While there are many digital baby monitors available today, finding a DECT model may still take some extra research. While the number of DECT models isn't overly large, the nice thing is that these monitors come in a wide range of prices and with lots of different features. Here are some of the best baby monitors using DECT technology.
01 of 08
Need a full-featured audio monitor? This model from Philips Avent has a talk-back feature so you can let baby know you're still close by, a temperature sensor so you can tell if your baby might be too warm or too cold, the ability to turn a nightlight on and off for baby, remote start for five different lullabies, a rechargeable parent unit, LED lights that show you how much noise baby is making, and an out of range alarm. It offers about 900 feet of range. The high-sensitivity microphone only turns on when baby makes noise, and it filters out any background sounds quite well. That means you won't hear any static or white noise through the monitor. Philips Avent was the first to offer DECT baby monitors in the U.S., so they've had time to perfect their models and it shows.
02 of 08
The best DECT baby monitor for parents on a budget, the VTech Safe & Sound DM111 has just about everything you could want in a basic audio monitor. There's a high sensitivity microphone, background noise filter, sound level indicator, and a belt clip for the parent unit. Since it's a basic monitor, there's no talk-back feature or a rechargeable parent unit battery, but it gives about 1,000 feet of range and clear sound for under $25.
03 of 08
Among the lower price options for DECT monitors, the Wee Voice High Definition model features VOX noise-canceling technology. The monitor senses any ambient noise and filters it, so you don't get hissing or other household sounds coming across. It has a talk-back button so you can communicate with the baby, a built-in night light, and rechargeable batteries for the parent unit. The range is about 1,000 feet, and the battery life is really good. This monitor is a nice choice if you'll need to have the parent unit away from the charger all night or all day.
04 of 08
Another lower-priced DECT baby monitor, the Motorola MBP160, offers almost 1,000 feet of range. There's an out of range alarm, lights to indicate the noise level in baby's room, a talk-back button, and a handy built-in stand on the parent unit. The parent unit is fairly compact, about the size of a cell phone, which is really nice if you'll move it around with you often.Continue to 5 of 8 below.
05 of 08
This Safe & Sound series model is an upgrade over the monitor listed above. It has about 1,000 feet of range, a talk-back feature, belt clip on the parent unit, and lights and vibration alerts for when the baby is making noise. There's a night light for baby and a rechargeable battery for the parent unit. You can expand the system later to include two parent units or just buy a set with two parent units. The backlit screen on the parent unit makes bleary-eyed night time monitoring easy.
06 of 08
There's so much to love about the Safety 1st Wee Voice monitor! It's one of the lowest-priced DECT models, it gives 1,000 feet of range, and it has VOX noise-canceling technology. The battery on the parent unit is rechargeable. The size is great, too - both units can fit in the palm of your hand. That's excellent if you'll be moving around a lot while listening in for baby - you can put the parent unit in a pocket.
07 of 08
You can buy this mid-range DECT baby monitor with one parent unit or two. The monitor has lights and vibration to indicate the sound level in baby's room, 1,000 feet of range, a talk-back feature, a belt clip on the parent unit, a rechargeable battery on the parent unit, and a light projector on the baby unit. You can adjust the angle of the light projector so your baby gets the best view of the stars and moons on the ceiling or wall. The DM222 monitor also plays a lullaby, controlled via the parent unit, to soothe baby.
08 of 08
A basic, reliable model, the DECT baby monitor from Philips Avent draws on the long experience of the manufacturer in terms of sound quality and noise canceling and cuts out features you may not need. There's a small night light for baby, plus sound level indicator lights on the parent unit. The range is up to 900 feet, with clear sound transmission and zero background noise. This model actually turns on the microphone when it detects sounds, and it's good at deciding whether the sound is a household- or baby-related. You can use the parent unit plugged in or with batteries. It does not come with a rechargeable battery.