Infant Optics DXR-8 Baby Monitor Review – Best Baby Monitor in 2020?
The Infant Optics DXR-8 baby monitor is an incredibly advanced system. Unlike other baby monitors, it has interchangeable lenses. Hence you can zoom in on a sleeping infant and see them breathe with the exceptional video quality, or choose a wider lens to monitor a whole room with a more active toddler.
You can even add more cameras if needed, for families with multiple children. And the whole system runs on a secure, in-home 2.4GHz FHSS wireless system. Hence your privacy is always protected.
The Infant Optics DXR-8 baby monitor has won award after award, being recognized by The Bump, Popular Mechanics, Wirecutter, TechRadar, Engadget, New York magazine, Lifewire, and others. Experts love the color monitor, high-quality imagery, and wireless convenience of the DXR-8, and it’s so small and convenient that it can fit anywhere.
Today I’m having a look at this incredibly popular video baby monitoring system to see what all the fuss is about.
Welcome to my Infant Optics DXR-8 review!
What is the Infant Optics DXR-8 Baby Monitor?
The Infant Optics DXR-8 baby monitor consists of two main parts: The camera unit and the monitor unit. Let’s first have a look at the camera:
The Camera Unit
The camera unit is compact, portable, and small enough to put anywhere. It has an interchangeable lens system, so you can choose a normal lens, wide-angle lens, or optical zoom lens.
This lens flexibility allows you to monitor a wide range of room shapes and sizes, depending on your needs. For example, you can zoom in on sleeping babies to observe their breathing and expressions, use a normal lens for toddlers who move around more, and use a wide-angle lens to monitor a whole nursery or playroom.
Furthermore, the Infant Optics DXR-8 camera has a built-in light sensor that switches to infra-red mode in low light conditions, so you never have a lack of visibility. It has a vertical tilt axis of 95° up and 25° down, and can pan tilt 135° left and right. It also has a microphone and speaker, so you can both listen for disturbances, and enable 2-way talk to soothe your baby without entering the room.
The Monitor Unit
The parent unit also has a compact, fit-anywhere size, but a 3.5” color display that shows you 320×240 RGB video for high resolution video monitoring. Using the monitor unit, you can watch videos from the camera, dim the video and monitor audio-only, remotely control the camera to zoom, pan and tilt your field of view. You can even monitor the temperature in a baby’s room!
The parent unit has LED lights that light up and visually indicate noise in a baby’s room, to alert you if you have lowered the volume.
Furthermore, the monitor has a 6-hour battery life in screen-on mode, and a 10-hour battery life in audio-only mode. It can be programmed with a sleep delay, where the video automatically dims after a few minutes, which conserves battery life.
The Complete Infant Optics DXR-8 System
The Infant Optics DXR-8 baby monitor and camera are pre-paired over a private, 2.4GHz FHSS wireless system. This RF system keeps your video secure, since it is never transmitted online; is stable, since it doesn’t rely on Wi-Fi or Bluetooth devices that may sometimes drop signal; and is fast, since it doesn’t have any network lag.
It doesn’t rely on an app that may not work properly on your devices, and you never have to worry about troublesome updates.
Furthermore, you can add up to 3 more cameras to the DXR-8 system, and use scan mode to monitor 4 cameras at once. This is a great option for a growing family. And it also allows the DXR-8 to double as a simple home security system.
Who Is Infant Optics DXR-8 Baby Monitor For?
The Infant Optics DXR-8 is perfect for parents who want an affordable, all-in-one baby monitoring solution. The ability to change lenses, automatic infrared night vision, high-quality video, and wireless connectivity can all add up to a big investment in other baby monitoring systems, but they are all included in this package.
It’s also a great option for those who want to ensure their privacy is protected. Because your video is never transmitted online, you never have to worry about your privacy and security, since your signal never leaves your home.
Finally, it’s an excellent choice for multi-child households. Because you can use up to 4 cameras on a single DXR-8 system, you can simply add more cameras as necessary without upgrading your entire baby monitoring system.
This expansion capability is also fantastic as a home security solution, since you could use a zoom lens to monitor a baby in a nursery, a normal lens to monitor a toddler in their bedroom, and wide-angle lenses to monitor your front and back doors or other points of entry into the house.
Anyway you set up the system, you can simply use the compact, wireless monitor to scan all your cameras at any time, or dim the monitor and rely on the audio to wake you in the event of a disturbance.
What’s in the Box?
The Infant Optics baby monitor comes with the camera unit with a normal lens, the display/control module, an additional optical zoom lens, and an extra charging cable. Infant Optics also offers live telephone support 7 days a week, for any help you may need with setting the system up properly.
Infant Optics DXR-8 Features
The Infant Optics DXR-8 has all features any new parent will require. And I’ve summarized the most useful ones in the table below:
You can purchase a wide-angle lens (sold separately) to expand the field of vision of the Infant Optics DXR-8 camera. And add up to 3 additional cameras to the DXR-8. With multiple cameras, you can use the scan mode feature to monitor all of them at once.
Pros & Cons
During my Infant Optics DXR-8 review, I found some great features about this great little baby monitor. And I summarized them in the first column. Of course, the Infant Optics DXR 8 is not perfect and some things annoyed me, and can be improved upon. Those are summarized in the second column.
Setup and Use
The Infant Optics DXR8 baby monitor is fast and intuitive to set up and use. Here are the simple steps to get you started:
- Charge the units: Before first use, charge the system fully, giving it a full 7 hours to charge the Infant Optics DXR-8 battery. To charge the camera and monitor units, plug them in and press and hold the power button to turn them on and initiate charging. A LED light will indicate the units are charging. During this time, the units will power on and can be used while plugged in. If the Infant Optics DXR-8 camera and monitor are too close together during the initial charge, there may be noise or alerts from signal feedback. So keep them a few feet apart from each other.
- Placing the camera: Once it is initially charged to full capacity, place the camera unit. The camera should be placed no closer than 3 feet away from a baby’s crib, and always out of reach of children. Remember to keep the charging cable out of reach of children also. The camera unit can be placed on a surface, or mounted on a wall. It is best to determine the optimal placement for signal strength before mounting the camera permanently.
- Set up the monitor: The DXR 8 baby monitor comes pre-paired, so you should not need to pair the camera and monitor until/unless you are adding additional cameras to the system. However, there are several settings you may want to configure upon first setup of the monitor:
- Monitoring volume: Volume can be adjusted from 0-8 levels. 0 is mute.
- Warning volume: The system will create an audible beep when it is low on battery or has compromised signal strength. This volume can be adjusted from high/low/off.
- Brightness: Brightness adjusts the brightness of the monitor for visibility.
- Operational controls: During this time, familiarize yourself with the camera controls and other settings.
- For Daily Use: Ensure that the system is charged by plugging the camera and monitor into a laptop, USB outlet, or power bank during the daytime. Dim the video monitor when the system isn’t in use, to preserve the Infant Optics DXR-8 battery life. Make sure that all parts of the system, including charging cables, are kept out of the reach of children.
You may want to silence alarms and alerts during the daytime when the system isn’t in use. So it isn’t an unnecessary distraction.
The biggest challenge most people will experience is the placement for optimal signal strength and minimal interference. Placing the camera too close to the monitor unit causes feedback and signal distortion. and placing them too far apart causes them to lose signal and trigger an alarm. The RF network is also susceptible to interference, which can come from a range of sources.
During initial placement and setup, keep your phone or other devices well away from the DXR-8. This is to prevent unwanted interference and determine the best placement without signal interference from mobile devices.
Ideally, the monitor and cameras would have an uninterrupted line of sight between each other, for optimal signal strength up to 700 feet. Realistically, if your goal is to place the Infant Optics DXR-8 camera in a baby’s room and the monitor in a parent’s room, there will be some walls and perhaps doors between them. Initial placement may involve some trial-and-error as you adjust the placement in a way that works for your home.
Sources of interference
Many of the everyday objects in your home can cause RF signal interference, either constantly (like a Wi-Fi router or large metal object), or intermittently (like Bluetooth signals, microwave ovens, or phones). Here are just some of the things that may cause signal degradation:
metal doors, refrigerators, mirrors, filing cabinets, reinforced concrete, radios, TVs, computers, cordless phones, mobile phones, fluorescent lights, dimmer switches, Wi-Fi networks, Bluetooth devices, or microwave ovens. The DXR 8 should be kept at least 5 feet away from all these items. Or they should be shut off or disabled if they cause interference.
For parents who may want to keep the DXR 8 monitor at their bedside, this can cause a problem. Low battery in either device can also cause signal issues. In the DXR 8, poor signal can cause audio quality noise and static, loss of connection between the camera and monitor, low-quality choppy video, and alert beeping. So it’s important to resolve signal problems for the best, worry-free monitoring.
Attempt to solve interference issues by tweaking the placement of the Infant Optics DXR-8 camera and monitor. If unsuccessful, follow the instructions in the Infant Optics DXR-8 manual to delete the camera unit and re-pair it onto a different channel.
If the video monitor unit is in black and white, and not in color, even though it is morning, likely, the system is still in infra-red mode. Exposing the camera to bright light should reset it back to normal mode.
While finessing an in-home RF network can be tricky, depending on your home’s architecture and the amount of interfering devices you may have, it remains a great solution for avoiding the security risks and lag times of baby monitoring over the internet.
In fact, you may even want to invest in an RF signal booster to ensure a steady, reliable signal and reduce interference. That way you can take full advantage of the range and capabilities of these devices. And worry less about interference from other sources of signal noise.
The Infant Optics monitor is a secure, simple way to visually and audibly monitor your baby’s room. This unique system grows with your child and your family, with the ability to change lenses and add more cameras over time. So you always have the solution that’s right for you.
The small footprint, exceptional video quality, night vision, pan tilt and zoom, and ease of installation make this system perfect in any household. And the secure, in-home network ensures your safety, security, and privacy. It’s a great way to get peace of mind for years to come.
Highly recommended! 🙂
PS, please check around my site for other exciting articles for example my car seat review.