Editor’s Note: This product has been removed from our side-by-side comparison because it has been discontinued. You can still read our original review below, but Top Ten Reviews is no longer updating this product’s information.
For more than 25 years, Safety 1st has been a popular and well-known maker of baby and child safety products. Thus, we were surprised to discover their latest video monitor, the Safety 1st True View Color Video Baby Monitor, was a less-than-stellar product evidently lacking in versatility.
To begin with, these video baby monitors seem to have chronic signal issues, intermittently dropping signals and at times producing irritating feedback. This isn't unique to just this monitor, but it seems to occur more so with this one than it does on many of our top-rated video monitors. Also, the battery life is not nearly as long as the specified four-hour maximum, even when the video is turned off and the monitor is functioning in audio-only mode. Speaking of the battery, we would've really liked to see a low-battery indicator on the monitor; as it's designed, there's no indication of how much charge is left and the monitor will simply beep right before the battery dies and the unit shuts off.
Furthermore, we were surprised to find Safety 1st video baby monitors plagued with multiple (though arguably minor) design flaws. The receiver unit has a cumbersome user interface that isn't very intuitive, and every time the unit is turned on, a Safety 1st splash screen appears, a detail we – and other users – found somewhat irksome. Plus, the camera is bulky and looks dated, and the receiver unit has no built-in kickstand to prop it up on a solid surface (you must either lie it down flat or clip it to your belt).
However, not everything about Safety 1st video baby monitors is disappointing. We do like how both units come with rechargeable batteries, and the monitor overall has impressive range when compared to other similar monitors (the maximum range is 350 feet). More importantly, the 2-inch LCD screen is definitely tantamount to our top three ranked monitors; it displays high-clarity color video during the day and automatically switches to surprisingly clear night vision when the baby's room begins to darken. And when the monitor isn't experiencing sporadic static, the audio quality is actually quite good and the camera's microphone is extremely sensitive, picking up on the softest of sounds.
Finally, we have to mention the flexible camera unit on Safety 1st video baby monitors. Equipped with remote pan, scan and zoom capabilities, the camera (which can be wall-mounted or placed on a tabletop) has an unexpectedly wide scope that ensures a clear, sharp image of the baby no matter where the camera is located.
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There's no question that Safety 1st video baby monitors shine in some areas and clearly fall short in others. While we don't love many of the design features (or the lack thereof) on this monitor, we do think the monitor boasts high-quality video and audio (sans the static) that's on par with our top-rated baby video monitors. In addition, the Safety 1st True View Color Video Baby Monitor is quite reasonably priced for a newer, name-brand video monitor and comes with a one-year warranty and comprehensive post-sale help and support, both factors to consider when searching for the perfect video monitor.