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on November 21, 2012
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
This is my first exposure to baby monitors. However, I have wireless internet security cameras, so I used that as a starting basis for my evaluation. The product came in eco-packaging. There was a camera, receiver, battery for the receiver, and two wall-wart power supplies. The camera does not come with a battery and needs to be installed within a few feet of a power receptacle. The receiver unit can be plugged in or used with the battery. There is a clip on the unit to allow you to carry it with you (such as on your belt). However I found the clip to be a bit questionable. It is mounted low on the receiver and the clip is not spring-loaded. The clip is much better suited as the flip-out easel stand.

The receiver video screen is in color. The color tends to be a little on the magenta side, but the resolution is excellent for the size. The camera optical quality also seems to be quite good. I was very surprised by the high quality of the images. The camera also uses infrared leds so it illuminates a dark room when viewed with the receiver, and yet no visible light is seen from the camera itself. The brightness of the screen can be adjusted with the controls on the receiver, so it can be used in sunny rooms or even outdoors, or inside rooms with no lighting. Speaking of outdoors, the camera is not suitable for outdoor weather, but it looks like it can be used outdoors on nice days if protected from moisture and extreme temperatures.

The camera also transmits audio back to the receiver. It does this surprisingly well and it also has intercom capabilities. There is a row of green and red leds along the top that light up according to the sound that is picked up. A crying baby would cause the red leds to light, but ordinary sounds only cause 1 or 2 green leds to light up.

There is a foldable antenna on the reciever, but I could use the camera anywhere in a 3500 sq-ft single-level house without needing the antenna to be extended. It may be needed in a multilevel house.

The system did not come with a manual, and no manual is on the website as of this date. It took several minutes to figure out the functions and settings of the buttons on the receiver. It isn't that hard to figure out, but really there should be at least a one-page document to explain the controls inside the box.

I plan to actually use this device in my outer office. When the receptionist is away, I can see people come into the outer office and actually speak to them if needed using the intercom capabilities of the camera. It doesn't take the place of a security camera because it has no recording capability, but it will be nice to see who comes and goes while I'm in another room. The receiver can link to several more cameras, but I have no ability to test this feature, and I don't know if it cycles through each camera automatically or if you have to press buttons to manually cycle.

I'm really impressed with this camera system!

1 YEAR UPDATE: The unit is still working great, but the flip out stand broke a couple months ago. So I have to lean it up against something to see it from where I sit. I've used this 10 hours a day, 5 days a week, for more than a year and the image is still perfect and the audio still works fine.

2 YEAR UPDATE: The receiver failed after about 4000 hours of use (around 10 hrs/day for 5 days a week). It would turn on, but couldn't reliably connect to the camera. Occasionally it would connect, but it also showed some weird letters and numbers in the corner on top of the image as if it was accessing the operating system or some data in memory. After a couple of days of doing this, it finally wouldn't connect at all. It lasted longer than I expected, and I would still rate it 5 stars. It was on a surge protector the entire time I had it.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICEon November 23, 2012
This is my second Levana baby monitor. I also have the more expensive model ERA 32102 which looks more like a cell phone than a baby monitor. It has the same 2.4 inch screen except in portrait mode which somehow makes it look smaller. The Lila is landscape mode which has a wider horizontal coverage. It is very sensitive that you can hear the baby breathe.

One really cool feature that I like and extremely useful is the two-way intercom. I also use it with my middle schooler who is studying in the room to come down when it's time for dinner

It's much more simple to use. You don't have to dig deep into the menus to adjust or find the feature that you need. I like the bigger buttons much more than the ERA's, the later is similar to an iPod's clikwheel which is hard to feel when you are pressing it. The plain white looks makes it looks much cleaner.

Another feature that I like with this monitor is that it doesn't have the red LEDs around camera even when it is on. You can put it on top of the shelf and nobody knows it is on. It is almost completely discreet except for tiny green LED on the side.

It uses a replaceable Lithium-ion battery at 3.7v with 1050 mA. The battery lasts much longer than the ERA 12103, even with the video on. The power adapters that came with it is rated 100-240v.

Cons:
Unless the room is well lit, most of the time it is in night mode and there is no color.
It has a stand but no clip to hang to your belt or clothes.
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VINE VOICEon November 25, 2012
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
This is a good option for a portable baby camera solution. It has good color resolution, night vision capability, and is fully portable -with a rechargable backup battery. It also has audio, and allows you to push a button and talk back to the camera. (Unfortunately when you talk back it sounds very Darth Vadery and creepy, and definitely NOT something that would easily calm down a crying child.) It also has an antenna that can be flipped up to give you a full range of 500 feet. Finally, it allows you to turn the brightness up or down which is what you'd need to do if you wanted to use this outside.

PROS:

+++ CAMERA IS COLOR. Aren't they all, these days? But, in any case, it is color and looks nice.

+++ HAS NIGHT VISION. Once the room gets dark enough the color disappears and the picture becomes black and white, but allows you to see in the dark.

++ NO VISIBLE LIGHTS. Well, only one, a green LED, on the BACK of the camera... but nothing to keep baby up, like the red LEDS that used to be used for night vision use in older cameras.

+++ GOOD AUDIO. You can hear pretty well from the camera's microphone and there is a neat LED across the top display which lights up more LEDs the more the camera picks up noise. So, there would be a visual indicator of red LEDS if the baby was crying. (Presumably you'd hear the crying, too, but I suppose if you muted it you'd still know the baby was crying by the LED indicators.)

++ TALKBACK FUNCTION. You can press a button and talk back to the camera -it acts just like an intercom. This might be useful if you were using it in the house with young children.

++ EASY VOLUME UP OR DOWN. Right below the screen there is a very simple to use volume toggle.

+++ RECHARGEABLE BATTERY. This is pretty awesome. You can unplug the monitor station and take it with you around the house.

++ CAN HOOK UP MULTIPLE CAMERAS. I didn't use this function but I found the menu on the device. It clearly can hook up to three other cameras, and you can view them at the same time (I believe) while then selecting the main camera to watch. I did not test this function so please do your own research on this capability.

++ MONITOR FLIP OUT STAND. This means you can place the monitor almost vertical, which provides an easy viewing angle.

CONS:

-- TALKBACK FUNCTION SOUNDS WEIRD. It sounded ok, but metallic, and a baby might not be soothed. I see it more working as an intercom for adults.

-- NO INSTRUCTION MANUAL. I did not receive a manual in the box. I didn't really need one, but it would have been nice. (NOTE: the manual MAY have been missing because it was an Amazon Vine Product. This may not be standard for new purchases.)

- SOMEWHAT HARD TO INSTALL BATTERY. I almost broke the case when I was installing the battery. It was close, so take some time to take it apart and put it back together carefully. There are little ridges of the battery holder which can snap off. Mine didn't, but when I was blindly trying to force the battery compartment closed they almost snapped.

-- NO BELT CLIP. This kind of cripples the use of this as something you'd wear while working outside. But, on the other hand, presumably you'd want to SEE it, and wouldn't want to carry it around on your belt. That said, it would have been nice, at least to help in monitoring a baby sleeping.

Overall, I am happy with this product. Recommended

Update:

I have used it many months now without issue. (One time the picture disappeared, for no apparent reason. However, unplugging the camera and replugging it in fixed the problem and it never recurred.) Also, one more great positive I discovered about this is that when the (rechargable) battery is going to run out (usually at the end of a day of usage, after at least a few hours of baby naps) it produces a loud beep every minute. At first I hated this but then I realized how important and helpful it was. It was basically telling me, "hey, I am going to turn off in 5 minutes, and you need to charge me". God forbid it just turned off and you went happily about your business in another room (or were sleeping) not realizing the monitor was no longer working, and then something happened to your child. This was a great feature, and it reinforces my high opinion of this product.
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on November 18, 2013
So far so good... about two months in and product works well. Clip is cheap, but hasn't broken yet. Ability to talk like God over the loud speaker to your restless kid is priceless.
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on February 4, 2015
This camera has good picture and sound. Can't speak to range as our apartment is small. With daylight, camera picks up crisp colors and details; was even able to make out a stain on baby's onesie. At night, the picture is not as detailed, but I am able to clearly see baby's head and nose position, hands, whether eyes are open, etc. Only problem is those small bits of day where it is neither light nor dark enough for clear picture - screen displays kinda greyish, and I can at best make out the lump of my baby's body. But this hasn't been a problem for us really, and would be cured by black-out curtains.

Sound is fine. Honestly, if baby is crying, I can hear it without a monitor. But this does pick up his smaller noises - sighs, whimpers, little night murmurs. The LED lights are good when I have monitor on mute - say I'm making a phone call - and have eye on screen, but wouldn't be bright enough for me to feel comfortable having it on mute with the screen off. There is some white noise the louder you turn it up, but I only need it at highest setting if I'm doing something noisy like running the dishwasher. Doesn't bother me at night when trying to sleep.

There is a microphone for speaking into baby's room, but at most this will buy you a couple seconds before you head into room. My baby will stop crying briefly in confusion, then continue away. So not a critical feature, in my view. I will say the microphone is quite sensitive at picking up sound when you do use it.

Now the battery is fine for moving about during naps or the first couple hours of night sleep. But it would not last all night unplugged. Not a problem if you have outlet near your bed.

Overall, a solid video monitor. Does the job, and I would purchase again or consider expansion cameras if we ever had the need.
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on August 2, 2015
This is THE monitor! When my original Lila needed to be replaced I decided to see what other more expensive models were all about. I tried the Lavana Astra, Levana Ovia, and Infant Optics DX-R 8. They all went back and I bought another Lila.

What I love about the Lila:
- the camera is small and light, easily mounted to the wall (I use 3M strips and it holds fine). you have to adjust where the camera is pointed manually, but since I'm really only using this in his room and it's only pointing at his crib it's fine.
- the monitor is small and portable, and the buttons are easy to use.
- the screen on the monitor is smaller than other models, but it's so much better. the picture is much more clear than the other bigger Levanas, and it's viewable from more angles. with the other models, I had to look at the monitor screen straight on; if I looked from any other angle I couldn't make out the picture. With the Lila, I can see the baby while my head is still on my pillow and the monitor is on my nightstand. With the other monitors, I needed to lift my head and get closer to the screen.
- peep mode is fantastic. the screen and sound goes off when nothing is happening in the room, and both go on when my baby makes noise. I can also keep the sound off and just have the screen light up when he makes a noise, which is super helpful because my baby makes a lot of noise while sleeping, and isn't necessarily awake.
- the lights on the top show how much noise is being made. this visual is really helpful when the sound is off, you can still tell how loud the baby is being.

Cons:
- the screen is really bright and I wish it went a little lower. but, the lowest iphone brightness setting is too bright for me so it might just be me who thinks it's too bright.
- I have had some range issues in large, long houses. But, I also forgot there was an antenna to use and this was with my original Lila, which I needed to replace because I dropped it and the antenna broke.

Bottom line is this is the best monitor I've tried, and it's also very reasonably priced. Get the model with two cameras so you can take the 2nd when you travel or go to Grandma's.
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on January 31, 2016
My wife loves this baby monitor, I find it very useful as well. It has sound levels so you can adjust the level at which it will pick up a whimper to a louder cry. It also has a speaker that you can talk to baby through (not used much but the feature is nice)

Overall we were looking for a good reliable monitor that didn't break the bank. This is perfect and I would recommend it to anyone!
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on February 15, 2016
Battery lasts through the night. Monitor works 40 yards from away through the brick walls of my house. The camera/screen is clear enough in light or dark. My baby is definitely monitored. If anything it's a little too sensitive. Every time my little man turns his head or sighs in his sleep the monitor lights up and I'm awake.
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on August 14, 2015
I love this camera! I was hesitant to purchase one because there are so many different kinds on the market, and I wasn't sure which one was the best (I didn't want to waste my money). Needless to say, I am very pleased that I purchased this one! It is very easy to set up, the night vision is great, and I love the noise level bar at the top (it turns red when the noise level goes over a certain point) so I can keep the sound turned down and still know if I need to go check on her.

My only complaint is that you cannot rotate the camera remotely (that comes with more expensive models though). However, at the price I paid for the camera I am very pleased!
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on August 7, 2015
I think it's good for the price, has a good range, the picture is good in the dark, it's quite sensitive so picks up a lot of sound. A paranoid first time parent might want to turn the volume down a bit so they can't hear every little thing! Probably won't use the feature where you can talk to your baby, it makes you sound like a robot, not very calming or reassuring for your baby!
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