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34 of 35 people found the following review helpful
TOP 1000 REVIEWERon December 17, 2009
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Philips Avent Baby Monitor with Sensors / B001V7R55Y

I feel self-conscious reviewing this baby monitor because it's the first one I've ever owned (and will probably be the LAST one, as well - I really do like it a lot), and I don't have a lot of experience to compare it with. So keep that in mind as you read this review.

I'm a big gadget geek, so it was probably inevitable that I'd love this baby monitor. The units are surprisingly small - I was expecting something bigger and bulkier from the picture, but both the room unit and handheld unit are very small, sleek, and elegant. The entire bundle comes with one room unit, one hand-held unit, chargers for both, a wrist lanyard for the hand unit, and a soft carry case for everything. And, of course, two user manuals. If there's anything I don't much care for about this unit, it's the user manuals - one has pictures but no words and the other has words with no pictures. I'd rather just have one user manual with both pictures AND words, but whatever, the units are clearly labeled and easy to use right out of the box, such that I barely needed to use the manual anyway, so it didn't matter much.

We plugged the room unit in the farthest room in the house, and the handheld unit and room unit immediately connected to each other without difficulty - and this in a house with a bunch of competing wireless devices. I left my fiancé there to make baby noises (interlaced with random Star Wars quotes, later) while I carried the handheld unit around the house with me. I was deeply impressed with how crisp and clear the sound was, especially given that I had not 'pre-charged' the unit hardly at all. I eventually ended up taking the handheld unit with me for a walk down the street, and the sound was *still* as crisp and clear as if I was in the same room with him, even at the end of the street.

As for all features provided here: The room unit monitors the local temperature and humidity and relates that information back to the handheld unit. I can't speak for the accuracy of the humidity assessment, but the temperature always matched the readout on the heating unit in the room. The room unit has a nice little "night light" feature that provides a very soft glow at the front of the unit, and I really like the lullaby feature - there are five different tunes, and you can choose to either play one or tell the unit to cycle through all of them. The handheld unit also sports a "Talk" button that you can use to communicate with the room unit - hold down the button to talk, and let go to stop transmitting. I like the "hold to talk" method because you aren't in danger of accidentally leaving the line open when you don't mean to.

At one point in our experiment, my fiancé pulled the plug on the room unit and my hand unit was still on and still expecting communication that it now wasn't getting. It started quietly, but insistently, beeping for my attention, to let me know that there was something wrong. The beeping stopped when I powered the hand unit off, but on reflection, it's good to know that if the room unit loses power for some reason in the night, you'll know immediately and will know to go check on your baby in person.

This is definitely a case where a picture is worth a thousand words, so I'll try to add a video showing all the cool features and how to use them.

~ Ana Mardoll
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
The first baby monitor we purchased was a color video monitor, and we spent aver $150 on it. I won't get into the details, but we relied so heavily on the video aspect that one day my wife and I didn't realize that the picture had frozen up, and our sixth-month old, upstairs and on the other side of the house, had been crying for who-knows how long. I felt horrible, and right away we ordered this Philips AVENT Baby Monitor to, at the very least, supplement the video monitor.

We had both monitors working simultaneously for a few weeks. The video monitor kept "locking up" on one image of my son, while on the AVENT monitor, I could clearly hear him (mind you, the video monitor also had sound, and apparently it wasn't very good. If I can ever find that monitor, I'll write a review for IT, too!). Soon, we just ditched the video monitor (which was quite a novelty for a while) and kept the AVENT.

It works wonderfully. It is extremely clear, and the lights on the top of the receiver light up in bright white from left to right when our son makes noise; this is handy because it confirms the audio, so you know you're not hearing something more locally. It is a sensative unit, obviously much better-built than the video one had been, both the transmitter and the receiver. The receiver also has a walky-talky feature on it, and often we have calmed down our now 13-month old by holding that button down and talking softly into the handset. We can also clearly see the temperature and humidity level in the room, both of which are handy when your little one has a stuffy nose or the croup, for example.

The base unit also plays a variety of lullabies. We haven't used that feature very often, but when we have, it has been quite pleasant. The battery life of the rechargable handset is excellent; it can stay on for more than a day at a time, and it will quickly recharge.

I am very impressed with the Philips AVENT; it is a bit steep for the $150 range, but as I learned from my experience with the other monitor, quality is very important with baby monitors, and this unit has commendable quality. I do recommend this product, gladly.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on November 10, 2010
I am very pleased with the Philips AVENT SCD530. It has fantastic range and very clear sound. The thermometer and hygrometer functions are accurate and useful.

If you're looking at this monitor, you might also be looking at the SCD525. My advice is to avoid that model. I had two of them (one from Amazon, and a replacement from Philips) and they both had relatively poor sound quality (for an expensive digital monitor, at least) and the lullaby feature played for a not-long-enough 3 or 4 minutes before shutting off. I also have an SCD520 and that one has been great, but it's hard to find these days (the SCD525 is its replacement). The SCD520 is still going strong but I needed a second monitor for our second child. Incidentally, we have no issues with interference even though we have two DECT monitors (same frequency) in close proximity. Very impressive.

My only minor complaint about the SCD530 is that, unlike the SCD520, it has a proprietary Li-ion battery. The SCD520 had a "battery pack" which was just two AAA Ni-MH batteries in a plastic holder. When the battery gets weak you can just replace the batteries with any AAA Ni-MH batteries. Extremely consumer-friendly. [EDIT: when I actually went to replace the batteries in my SCD520 I found that it was not as straightforward as I expected. I still think it would be possible to do but since I think breaking the battery holder would be a real possibility (and would leave us without a monitor for a while until we could get a replacement battery) I decided to just order a new battery pack.] The SCD530's parent unit is tiny, and I would have been happy for them to make it a little bigger if necessary to use less-expensive and user-replaceable Ni-MH batteries. Imagine how long the battery could last if it used AA rather than AAA cells!

I noticed another review that stated that the baby unit has no battery backup. This is not true. You can put 4 AA batteries in the baby unit and it will operate for a long time without A/C power.

Bottom line: this is a great product, but avoid the SCD525.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on November 30, 2010
We have a 10 week old baby and used this monitor from day 1 with ease and delight.

The Run Down
1 Base Unit (for baby's room), 1 Portable Unit (for parents or caregivers), 1 Travel Case (for the much needed vacation that I won't be taking any time soon), 1 Quick Start Guide with pictures only and 1 more in-depth written manual. The monitor comes with a base unit that is placed in the baby's room and a portable, hand-held unit that can easily be carried with you. Both units are very small and sleek. The base unit features a soft glowing night light, displays temperature and humidity, plays 5 lullabies and, of course, is also a baby monitor. The hand-held unit is also able to transmit sound to the base unit when you hold down the "walkie-talkie" button on the side, also displays temperature and humidity of baby's room, comes with a belt clip, a wrist strap and a battery charger base.

Functionality
The monitor works extremely well. Not only is your connection secure and private, but the range is also awesome. I'm sure that I'll never use this monitor to leave my baby unattended while I go for a stroll, but it's good to know that it would work well if I lived in a huge mansion with adjoining gardens.

The temperature reading is very accurate, and I feel comfortable saying that the humidity "feels" accurate since I have no other gadgets to officially confirm. At first, I was a little skeptical about needing a humidity reader, but upon further research, I found that humidity control is quite important for our baby's health. The optimal humidity level for overall healthy air ranges from between 25% to 55%. With that said, the humidity reader let me know that I didn't need to run the humidifier as often as I was, thereby making my house less of a target for mold and bacteria while saving a little bit of energy (mother nature thanks you, AVENT.)

The lullaby feature is a nice touch, but produce a fairly rudimentary electronic sound. Of course, this is coming from a musician, so take it for what it's worth. My standards are high. There are 5 lullabies that can be played once, after one another (play all), or you can choose to play one lullaby 5 times in a row. The lullabies are operated from the base/infant unit, and it would be nice to be able to control the lullabies from the parent unit.

The "walkie-talkie" feature, or intercom talk back, is an awesome feature. When you push the "talk" button on the hand-held parent unit and speak into it, you are able to communicate with the base unit. Note that the "talk" button must be held down for the entire time that you're talking, otherwise, you will not be heard in the other room. I use the feature to verbally soothe my baby as I am on my way to rescue him from poopie diapers. More often than not, he's no longer crying by the time I make my way up the stairs. Hearing Mommy's voice lets him know that help is on the way, which really does comfort my little guy.

Pros:
Clear transmission and excellent range
ECO mode that saves energy when monitoring from short distances
Extremely portable - small, sleek and light units
Monitor indicates noise by sound and via LED lights
Comes with padded carrying case for travel
Rechargeable batteries (love this feature)
Parent unit locator

Cons:
Only one handheld unit - it would be nice to have two handheld units to keep in different rooms, but because of the portability of the handheld unit, not that much of a con.
The base unit has to be within 3 feet of the baby in order to function properly.
Expensive, but you get what you pay for...quality = higher price

Overall, this monitor is a great monitor, and I highly recommend it. Have fun with the intercom talk back feature. Ten-four, over and out.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon December 16, 2009
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
This baby monitor is the best one I have ever used. It comes loaded with useful features that one would actually want to use. It consists of two components - the base monitor unit and the parental carry unit. The parental unit has a charging base that can be used to charge the unit without even having to turn the unit off. However, the base monitor unit does not have any battery backup. So if power is out, so is the baby monitor.

Let's look at the features of this baby monitor. First and foremost, it provides the basic baby monitoring with crystal clear digital sound. Any sound in the baby room would be picked up and audible from the carry unit, along with light indicators showing the level of the sound. Sensitivity can be adjusted on the carry unit accordingly. Second, it also monitors the temperature and humidity in the baby room and the results are shown on both the monitor unit and the carry unit. An alarm can be set to sound if the temperature and/or humidity exceed a set threshold. This is a useful feature if the temperature varies a lot from room to room, or the humidity gets too dry with the heater turned on during winter season. Next, the baby monitor can also play lullabies and acts as a night light. Last but the least, it can double up as an intercom. With the press of a button on the carry unit, you can talk back to soothe your crying baby.

No doubt Philips AVENT has built a lot of useful features into this baby monitor and still keep it small enough for parents to want to bring it when they travel. Overall, it's a nicely built, feature rich baby monitor. The only thing lacking is video monitoring but not many parents actually needs it as it will simply add to the cost of the baby monitor.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on January 13, 2010
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I have been very pleased with the performance of this baby monitor. I wish it had video like my Summer Infant monitor, but the features it does have are terrific.

The unit is small, about a four-inch cube, and the parental unit fits comfortably in my hand. Both are easy to use with intuitive buttons. The monitor has a digital display on top that shows the room's current temperature and humidity level. You can set an alarm to go off if either goes beyond your desired threshold. The monitor also has a dim nightlight and lullabies that play. You cannot initiate the lullabies from the parental unit, which is a shame, but a quick press of the lullaby button before you leave the room helps sooth the baby. The cordless parental unit charges quickly and holds the charge for several days. It also shows the temperature an humidity in the baby's room. It has a button on the side like a walkie-talkie so you can speak to your child through the monitor. The units work well through multiple levels of the house, through several walls and even outside with no interference at all. That, for me, is the best aspect of this monitor. Other monitors I've used always screech with some sort of static while I'm walking around with them.

This monitor has other uses besides just for your baby. When another child of mine got a stomach virus and we isolated him in his room, we put the monitor in there to use as an intercom. He could just talk if he needed something and we could press the button on the parental unit for him to hear us. It was a great system. I am extremely happy with this Philips Avent monitor.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on January 29, 2010
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
It took me a while to write a review for this product because I really wanted to have a solid test before I offered my opinion. As of this writing we have an 11 week old baby and use this monitor quite frequently. I think it is unique to have the temperature and Humidity sensor in the monitor as we live in a very dry climate and it helps us regulate the humidifier in our daughter's room. I have really had 0 problems with this moniter. It is great to travel with and easy to use.

The 1 large down side is that the main unit sucks the life out of batteries extremely fast. In cases where we have accidently left it on for 2 days, the batteries are dead. It does come with a regular adapter, however it is at times inconvenient to have the monitor plugged in while being close enough to the baby.

We haven't used the talk to baby portion very much because our daughter is not old enough. However, it does work nicely and I look forward to using the function when she is older and we may be able to calm her down without having to go into her room.

Overall I think this is a great product but may be on the expensive side. If you are willing to fork out the cash then you will get a quality device in return.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on October 29, 2010
We've had this item for six months now and I tend to agree with the postings I read here before purchase that it could do with a few extra features. Still, I have a lot of trust in Philips and Avent, so went ahead. It's a very important piece of new baby equipment, so ease of use problems play second fiddle to reliability. This unit has worked very well, the tunes are nice (they've sent me off to sleep listening on the handset), the light is OK, the battery life is good too. Importantly, as well, is the temp and humidity readings and warnings which work well and give me a lot of confidence. But, I agree with older postings that you should be able to switch on the tunes from the handset. My biggest peave with this unit is using it in the dark or dim bedroom. The buttons aren't lit. If you use nighlights and things that may not be a problem and the untis rock solid performance justifies the price. I'd recommend this unit and just give you the heads up about using it in the dark. Hope this review was helpful and enjoy your new baby.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
This unit replaces an almost six year old Summer Infant video monitor. The video display on that unit stopped working several months ago, but we've still been using the audio to monitor our three year old. Thankfully, she still stays in her bed and just calls out when she wakes up.

The most noticeable feature of this set is its quietness. I kept checking to see if it was on because the old set definitely made you aware when was on; it had a strong hum. This set also has a five level sensitivity control that doesn't transmit unless a threshold is reached. Nice feature and it appears to work well. The volume is also five levels and can cover a reasonable range. In addition, there are five white LEDs which light up according to the sound level. Other good features are the compact size of both the baby and parent units and the automatic charging of the parent unit.

The temperature and humidity readings are useful for a baby's room. The temperature sensor (1°F resolution) read the same as an Oregon Scientific EB313HG. The humidity sensor (1% resolution), however, read about 8-10% higher than the EB313HG as well as two metal spring hygrometers. I am not sure why but since the other three were in agreement, I'm guessing this one is a little out of calibration.

For the lullabies feature, I find it curious they keep repeating until it is stopped at the baby unit. Every other system I've used timed out after 10-20 minutes. I also wish this feature was remotely controllable. The five lullabies are pleasant chime melodies. The travel pouch is a nice bonus but I don't know how useful it really is. The system price is a bit more than others but the quality is apparent. Overall, for parents who don't need or want a video monitor, this is an impressive monitoring system.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon December 17, 2009
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I am really pleased with the monitor. It works perfect.

There is a base unit and the parent unit. The base unit is the small cube box, and it has a sensor for temperature and humidity. You have to place it where baby is there. It has a night light and some lullaby tunes which maybe useful for some. This one can run on electricity as well as batteries. It does not come with batteries. It has a LCD which shows temperature and humidity. It also has a Page button which you can use to locate the parent unit.

The parent unit is the small unit with the LCD showing the temperature and humidity obtained wirelessly from the base unit and you are supposed to carry it with you using attached belt clip, or just place in room where you are. This unit has 5 light indicators which go in increasing from left to right lighting up depending on noise in baby's room. You can adjust volume from low to high (5 steps possible). You can setup alerts for temperature and humidity respectively. For example, you want alarm when temperature increases to be 80, you can do that. There is a TALK button, if you press that and say into the unit, your voice can be heard in the baby's room on the base unit. This parent unit has a built in rechargeable battery pack, and from my experience lasts long time. There is a power cradle supplied which you can use to charge it. You can also continuously leave on the cradle, there is no danger of overcharging.

Setup is very easy. Turn on base unit, then turn on parent unit, they both find each other, there is a light on the parent unit which turns green and soon in few seconds you can see temperature and humidity as reported by base unit. The reception is great and works across 3 rooms in my house.

There is VIRTUALLY NO NOISE AT ALL. No hissing sounds or static even on max volume. This is the best feature. No more annoying static and disturbance and me and my wife can sleep peacefully.

I carried it with me in the supplied pouch to a trip. There was a big party, and lot of noise. My baby was sleeping in a room, and even in the noise of the party, the parent unit alerted me clearly to my baby waking up as soon as she woke up.

I think this is a great product. Worth the money absolutely.
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