The Infant Optics DXR-8 outperformed every other video baby monitor we tested. Its video and audio quality is excellent. Setting up this video baby monitor is quick and easy, which is important when you have so many other things to do in preparation for a baby. For these reasons and more, the Infant Optics DXR-8 earns the Top Ten Reviews Gold Award.
No other baby monitor with a camera in our comparison comes close to the video quality of the Infant Optics. The image it projects on the handheld parent unit is clear and smooth. In our tests, we set up the camera in one room and moved the monitor 30 feet away. The image remained smooth and clear with every movement, with no trails or lag. Although the monitor screen is small at 3.5 inches, with the relatively low resolution, it doesn't make much of a difference in the video quality.
You have the option of hooking up a total of four cameras that you can monitor from the one parent unit, but you'd need to purchase those other cameras separately. The Infant Optics gives you the ability to control the camera from your monitor, so you can pan the camera from side to side, tilt it up and down, or zoom in to see more detail – all without disturbing your baby by going into the nursery.
The main downside to this video baby monitor is that you can't record video or take snapshots with it. These features aren't the most important for a baby monitor, but they are fun and allow you to preserve those chance precious moments you pick up on the monitor.
Setting up the Infant Optics DXR-8 was incredibly easy in our test. After charging the parent unit overnight, we simply plugged in the camera and turned on the monitor, and it picked up the signal right away. We explored our options in the menu and then started our tests. After the 30-foot test, we left the baby camera in one room and took the monitor downstairs into another room, leaving about 50 feet between the camera and monitor, and more obstacles. There was a slight lag in the video and audio, which is why the connection quality score was only 90 percent – which is still better than any other video baby monitor we tested.
In another test, we wanted to see how long the battery lasts, so we simulated a typical night with an infant. We kept the monitor and camera running for eight hours in power-saving mode, and we made noise near the camera every two hours. We turned the monitor back on at those points to check on everything and then back off once we knew all was well. The monitor still had about three-quarters of its battery left after eight hours, which is the best result we saw in this test.
We also tested the range of this monitor with no obstructions like walls or floors. Indoors, we were able to push it to about 120 feet before the quality of the connection and video began to degrade. The manufacturer claims this monitor and camera can work at a range of 700 feet, but that's outdoors and with no obstacles whatsoever.
This is a simple video baby monitor, so you don't get the convenience of Wi-Fi capability or an AV output. With Wi-Fi capability, you'd be able to use the monitor via your smartphone, and with an AV output, you'd have the ability to hook up the monitor to your television for a larger image.
A helpful extra feature on this monitor is the temperature indicator. The last thing you want to do is wake your baby as they are sleeping soundly, but you also want to know if the temperature is just right in the nursery. Instead of potentially waking your baby by checking the temp in their room, you can just glance at the parent unit to see the temperature and adjust your thermostat as necessary.
You can mount this camera on the wall to save space or stand it on a shelf. The Infant Optics also comes with interchangeable lenses so you can get a closer look at your baby or a wider view of the room. The infrared LEDs produce enough light for video, but not enough to disturb your baby. This video baby monitor doesn't have a nightlight or lullabies to comfort your baby, but these are not vital enough features to strip this unit of its title as the best baby monitor we tested.
Infant Optics doesn't offer the best warranty among video baby monitor makers, but you do get a full year of protection from defective parts or labor. You can contact the manufacturer by phone every day during office hours or email the customer support team. We received a quick response from its service team, and the representative answered all of our questions.
Though it's missing a few extra features and isn't a Wi-Fi baby monitor, the Infant Optics DXR-8 is the best video baby monitor we tested. Its simple design makes it easy to set up and use, and most importantly, it offers clear, crisp image and audio quality.