Unless you live in a studio apartment, a baby monitor is an essential piece of kit and the reassurance you get from it, is second to none. The ability to listen to your child and check that they aren’t crying out for you is both comforting and potentially life-saving, but with so many monitors on the market it’s difficult to know where to start.
With Jack we opted for an under-the-mattress sensor monitor which was incredibly reassuring in the early days but once he could crawl and stand, it would have been really useful to have had a video monitor to see what he was up to! So when we were offered the opportunity to review the BT Video Monitor 7500 Lightshow with Phoebe I was over the moon. No more running up the stairs at every murmur, hurrah!
The BT Video Monitor 7500 Lightshow is BT’s top of the range baby monitor and has a whole host of brilliant features including:
- 3.5″ colour Touchscreen LCD display
- Pan, tilt and 3x zoom
- Twinkly projected lightshow featuring stars and moons to help your little one drift off to sleep
- 19 Lullabies including classical, nursery rhymes, white noise, nature and womb sounds
- HD Sound for crystal clear audio so sensitive you can hear your little one breathing
- Temperature Display that lets you know how hot or cold it is in the nursery
Set up //
The initial set up could not have been easier. After charging the parent unit for 5 hours, I just needed to plug the correct cables into both the camera unit (which can’t run off batteries) and the parent unit (that can run off batteries), press the power buttons on both units and watch them connect to each other automatically. Simple!
The BT Video Monitor 7500 Lightshow is really easy to use and although the manual has clear instructions / graphics to assist in setting it up, the monitor is so easy to navigate, you are unlikely to need it.
Projected lightshow and lullabies //
The monitor has a built in light show that projects stars and moons onto the ceiling to help your little one drift off the sleep. I have to say that I am of the ‘darker the room, the better’ mindset, so haven’t used it with Phoebe, but it does project really well up the wall and onto the ceiling.
The 19 built-in lullabies feature classical music and traditional nursery rhymes – from Mozart to Twinkle, twinkle. There is also a white noise option with sleep-inducing sounds such as ocean waves, simulated womb sounds and even a hairdryer. If only we’d had this monitor 3 years earlier, it would have saved me from sitting outside Jack’s bedroom with the hairdryer blowing aimlessly for hours on end, as it was the only noise that seemed to calm him down and make him sleep!
Both the lightshow and the lullabies can be turned on via the camera unit, but as with all the various features they are both controlled via the touchscreen on the parent unit.
Night light //
The adjustable night light allows you to find your way around your little one’s room without having to turn on the main light. It gives off a dull orange glow that can be adjusted for brightness and you can also put it on a self-timer if you wish.
HD sound and talk back //
The BT Video Monitor 7500 Lightshow has brilliantly clear HD sound that is sensitive enough to pick up Phoebe’s breathing. It also has a two way talk-back that at the moment seems to bewilder and upset Phoebs as she’s too young to understand why my voice can be heard clearly but i’m nowhere to be seen, but I’m sure in the coming months / years it will be invaluable when I need to tell her to get back into bed!
Pan, tilt and zoom remotely //
You can move the camera remotely (left, right, up and down) by using the touchscreen controls on the parent unit, which is very handy when Phoebe has moved in her sleep and wriggled out of shot! The camera rotates seamlessly and it can be moved 300 degrees around and 50 degrees up and down which is a brilliant expanse and covers a much wider area than I expected. Thankfully the motor is really quiet so the chances of waking Phoebe whilst adjusting the camera, are slim to none. Having the ability to zoom in up to 3 times is also really reassuring.
The 3.5 inch touchscreen has a fantastic 480×320 pixels resolution ensuring an incredibly clear view of Phoebe, even in a pitch black room. It also has smartphone style automatic brightness setting, which is great for night time when you don’t want to be disturbed by a bright screen. Although to be honest I tend to turn the screen off when i’m sleeping as a like a pitch-black room.
Up to 4 cameras at once //
The BT Video Monitor 7500 Lightshow can be connected to up to 4 cameras which is perfect for keeping an eye on several siblings at once. You can watch all 4 on a split screen and then easily select one full screen if you hear a noise in that room. The sound feed cycles between each camera or you can choose to switch the sound manually to the camera of your choice.
There are several additional features of the monitor that I really like including:
The temperature display // At this time of year it can be invaluable. The recommended room temperature for a sleeping baby is between 16-20 degrees C, so having the temperature visible lets me know if I need to adjust Phoebe’s sleepwear to keep her comfortable.
Great range // The monitor has a huge range of up to 50m indoors and 300m outdoors, which has been perfect for us. We live in a three storey house and I was worried that the signal wouldn’t reach from top to bottom but so far we’ve had no problems at all. There is an out of range alert if you do exceed the recommended distances.
Invisible infrared lights // Unlike some video monitors, the night vision lights on the monitor are completely invisible when it’s dark, ideal if you want your little one to sleep in complete darkness.
Easy charging // There is a dock included for easy charging and the parent unit uses a Micro USB for its power cable which is really handy.
Feed timer // I haven’t needed to use this function but it’s a brilliant addition if you have a newborn and/or feed to a strict routine.
Crying alert // There are four different crying alerts you can choose to react to your babies crying if you turn the volume down at night. We have chosen the ‘screen only’ option as Phoebe sleeps in the next room to us anyway so we hear her in the night through the walls!
The camera unit has a tripod thread and is wall mountable (screws are included), but we didn’t want to put holes in the walls unnecessarily, so we’ve placed it on a little box of drawers on Phoebe’s bedside table. Luckily the drawers are the perfect height but we would have found a clip really useful to attach the unit to the side of the cot.
We have been completely bowled over by this monitor and my only gripe is the ‘link’ light on the camera unit is slightly too bright. This wouldn’t be a problem for most people but I prefer no light at all in our bedrooms.
The BT Video Monitor 7500 Lightshow is up there as one of the more expensive video baby monitors on the market, currently retailing for around £150. However, in my opinion, it is definitely worth the price tag. It’s easy to use, has a fantastic range of functions, fabulous image quality and it looks great too.
This truly does feel like the only monitor you will ever need and I cannot recommend it highly enough.
The BT Video Monitor 7500 Lightshow is available to purchase on amazon, in addition to many other online retailers and shops.
*Disclosure: I was very kindly sent this monitor free of charge for the purpose of this review, however all opinions are my own and I’d still rave about it even if i’d paid for it!