When our D-Link HD Wi-Fi Baby Camera (DCS 825L) arrived, my husband and I were stunned. This looked like a marvel in modern baby monitor technology. It was an orb with a camera that we could actually control using our phones! Having used only an audio monitor with our first baby, we were pretty excited about testing a monitor where we would actually be able to see what was happening behind closed doors. And not just that—we could literally monitor our baby while we were even away from home! We were psyched!
The monitor itself is beautiful. It looks like a white orb and includes switchable white, pink and blue accent rings that can be placed around the camera lens to coordinate with baby’s room. We kept it nice and neutral by leaving the white ring on. The base is gray and has a nice grip on the surface that it’s placed on, so we weren’t worried about it sliding off by accident.
As far as physical assembly goes, it pretty straightforward, which was nice. There was an option to mount it on the wall for a more panoramic experience, but because the power cord was long enough and our outlet was easily accessible, we opted to keep it on a bookshelf with a clear view of her sleeping area and bedroom. Also, because the cord is long, the adaptor cord should definitely be placed in an inaccessible place for children that is a minimum of 3 feet (or 1 meter) away, per the Quick Install Guide’s instructions. It is also strongly advised that the monitor not be placed in a sleeping area or inside the crib. It should also only be used indoors as water could damage the monitor. I scanned the mounting instructions in the included Quick Install Guide, which were easy to follow. The mounting bracket has all the screws required to mount and the other extra supplies you need would be a pencil and a drill with a 6mm drill bit.
Because the monitor relies on using the Internet and/or Wi-Fi, we needed to download the “mydlink Baby” app (available for both iPhone and Android). Once that was downloaded, the set-up was intuitive. Something to note was that we needed to register our monitor (via the app) online in order for us to be able to use it remotely. After that, our monitor was ready to use right away.
After setup was complete and we had placed the monitor where we wanted it, we went into another room and opened the app on my phone. Something we noticed right away was the HD resolution. It was amazing and ranges from 360P to 720P; however, at 720P, the camera was taking a noticeably longer time to focus. We checked out the scanning capabilities of the camera (found in the upper right corner of the display screen) which were great and an added bonus is that we could either use an “auto pan” feature of have up to five preset positions. Being able to pan and tilt the camera was great because it felt like we could get a lot of visibility in her room.
The camera also has some super features like sound and motion detection, temperature alerts (available in both Celsius and Fahrenheit), event recording (using either still photos or video), a slot for a microSD card for auto recording, lullabies (five different ones!), day/night modes (which can be set to either “auto,” “all day,” or “all night”) and—my personal favorite—two-way audio between baby and parents. All of these features can be found in the settings menu and adjusted to fit your exact preferences.
The sound and motion detection was cool because it was instantaneous and alerted us with push notifications when something was happening. It even picked up on shadow movement in the room! It was nice to be able to have an event recording feature, but to be honest, we didn’t find it to be a necessary feature for the monitor since we plan on only using the monitor while the baby is (most likely) asleep in his or her room. Unless something unbelievable happens while the baby is sleeping, we really found no need to record what was going on. We set the monitor to automatically detect between day and night. In day mode, the picture is clear and colorful, however in night mode, it switches to a hazy black and white.
The lullabies were a nice touch, and the volume of the music could easily be controlled on the phone, which is especially nice because at its loudest setting, the music can be pretty jarring. You can play just one at a time or decide to play all five in a row. And depending on whether your baby actually likes music in the room, it’s still good to know that music is a bonus feature on the monitor.
Something we noticed was that the audio, while clear and audible, had a lag. There was about a 3-5 second delay in what we heard from our baby and what our baby could hear from us, too. The delay felt especially long when we were using the camera remotely, as opposed to using it at home on our Wi-Fi network.
A good point to note about this monitor is that multiple family members can download the D-Link app on their phones and can connect to the camera we have in our home, too, so it’s not just one person who has access to what the baby is up to. Also, because this is a monitor that is plugged into the wall, there is no battery to charge at all.
Overall, having the accessibility to see our baby both at home and away is the most we could ask for in a baby monitor. I would absolutely recommend the user-friendly and intuitive D-Link HD Wi-Fi Baby Camera to any parent wanting the latest in high-tech baby gear while maintaining peace of mind.
To buy: amazon.com