FOR many parents, a baby monitor is an absolutely indispensable gadget.
A baby monitor gives parents peace of mind when they’re in a separate room to baby, and it lets them check in on their older kids when they’re upstairs or having a playdate.
They can cost a lot, but we’ve rounded up the cheapest and best value baby monitors that do the job for under £50.
Baby monitors have different capabilities: some just allow you to listen in on baby, while others offer video capacity so you can see exactly what your little one is up to.
Some baby monitors, like BT’s Audio Baby Monitor 450 Lightshow, includes music and lights that can help soothe babies to sleep.
You can also find plenty of sophisticated-yet-cheap baby monitors that allow you to view your baby in real time across multiple devices, like the magnetic EZVIZ Mini O baby monitor, making it easier to be away from your baby when you're in the office or travelling for work.
Other features to consider when buying a baby monitor is whether you want two-way communication, where you can speak to your baby as well as listening in on them.
Some baby monitors are wireless, so you can move around from room to room and maintain a clear signal. You can decide if you need a baby monitor that can be mains or battery-operated – ideal for taking with you when you travel.
1. Cheap baby monitor under £20
- VTech Safe & Sound Digital Audio Baby Monitor, £19.99 at Argos – buy here
VTech's audio monitor has an impressive range of up to 450m and both mains and battery power.
"This did exactly what I needed, clear audio and it picks up the slightest sound!" one reviewer raves, while others say the "sound is crystal clear."
Perfect for those looking for a basic, no-frills, good value-for-money monitor.
2. Cheap baby monitor with nightlight and sound
- BT Audio Baby Monitor 450 Lightshow, £39.99 at BT – buy here
Baby monitor meets nightlight in BT's Lightshow design, which projects stars and moons onto baby's nursery ceiling and plays lullabies to help soothe your little one to sleep (there are 18 to choose from, so you'll have plenty of variety).
The nightlight will come in handy long beyond the baby phase, and a two-way talk back feature allows you to chat to your little one. It even has a temperature monitor.
3. Cheap smartphone-connected baby video monitor
- EZVIZ Mini O Plus Wi-Fi Camera, £59.99 at Amazon – buy here
This Smart Home Camera isn't strictly a baby monitor, but can be used as one and ticks every box when it comes to clear sound and a crisp picture.
Parents using it to keep an eye on the kids are impressed with the value for money, and it can be accessed via your smartphone or tablet so is ideal for those wanting to check up on their little one in real time when they're back at work or away travelling.
The Mini O is also convenient because it clips easily onto any magnetic base and automatically switches to night mode when it gets dark.
Fans like it so much they tend to go back and order several more for different rooms in the house.
4. Cheap baby video monitor
- Motorola MBP482 Baby Video Monitor, £49.99 at Argos – buy here
For a budget video baby monitor, this design from Motorola offers plenty to entice, like a 2.4" diagonal colour screen, crystal-clear audio, room temperature readings, infrared night vision and a 300m range.
Parents love the quality of the image and say it's just as good – or even better than other, more expensive, baby monitors they've tried.
5. Cheap no-frills baby monitor
- £24.98 at Amazon – buy here
An audio-only baby monitor with clear sound and LED lights that can alert you to baby's movements, this basic, no-frills design from BT has a 50m indoor range and 300m outdoor range.
There's nothing fancy like talkback or lullabies, but that suits many parents just fine.
As one reviewer notes: "It's compact, crystal clear and has great sound. We can hear every sniffle, cough, and whimper our baby makes long before he cries so are really impressed with the microphone/sound."
6. Cheap wireless baby monitor
- Motorola MBP 160 Audio Baby Monitor, £58.97 from Amazon – buy here
This Motorola design is wireless, so you can easily move it from room to room.
It also has a highly sensitive microphone to pick up every single sound and give parents peace of mind.
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Want to be able to see your baby from another room? We've rounded up the best baby video monitors, right here.
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