Any new parent will know that sleep is a precious commodity when a newborn baby arrives, both for the baby and for the parents!
The quality of your baby’s sleep directly impacts your own ability to sleep well, and we all know how important it is to relax and recharge overnight when you have Mummy duties to perform all through the day.
This is why it is so important to get a good baby monitor that affords you peace of mind whilst your baby is sleeping.
The right baby monitor can allow you to be both vigilant and relaxed at the same time, which is surely the holy grail of parenting.
The Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature Baby Monitor offers both audio and video transmission, and also comes with a unique movement sensor mat.
This monitor is at the pricier end of the scale and offers some cool features which help to aid peace of mind for anxious parents. However, some parents complain that the monitor is too sensitive and causes more stress than security.
In this review we look at all the features of the Tommee Tippee Baby Monitor and assess both its pros and cons so that you can decide if this monitor is the right choice for you and your baby.
The Tommee Tippee Back to Nature Baby Monitor set has one nursery unit complete with audio transmission and camera, and one portable parenting unit with a 3 inch screen offering LCD display, color video and infrared night vision video.
It also comes with a movement sensor mat, battery pack, power cord and adapter, instruction manual and tripod mount.
The Tommee Tippee Baby Monitor has received many positive reviews from customers online, and we found that it provided great video and audio quality as well as excellent DECT connectivity and range.
However, this product falls down when it comes to the sensory mat feature, and its video quality is not entirely reflective of its premium price point.
What We Like
- 300m connection range and awesome interference-free connectivity
- 8-10 hour battery life last all through the night
- Battery power option for times when a power socket is not available
- Paging function for when you misplace the parent unit
- Clear colour and infrared video quality
- Excellent audio quality with two way talk back feature
- Lightweight and portable for when you need to pack a baby bag
- Easy set up and simple display settings
- Room temperature gauge on parenting monitor so you can be sure your baby is not too hot or cold
- Gentle backlight glow to cam and sooth your baby
What Could Be Better
- High price point for standard video quality
- Movement sensor mat can be highly sensitive and alarming
- Plastic outer on nursery unit is susceptible to damage
- 3 inch screen is small compared to other models available
- No wall mount option, and no wide angle lens makes camera positioning difficult
Connection And Range: ⅘ Stars
The Tommee Tippee Baby Monitor has excellent connectivity and range, making it a top choice for parents with large houses and active lives.
The digital enhanced cordless technology (DECT) allows you to roam anywhere within 300m of the nursery unit and still enjoy an interference-free connection with the nursery unit.
As a result, it allows you to get on with all the jobs and tasks you need to do about the house without feeling restricted.
You can even go out into the garden and remain connected which certainly isn’t the case with all baby monitors.
Another great thing about this monitor is that it does not need wifi in order to work. The parent unit and nursery unit connect automatically after they have been synced.
The process of syncing them is very simple and there is a step-by-step guide as to how to do it in the product manual.
An indicator light lets you know when you have moved out of range of the nursery unit, and this is a great little feature as it allows you peace of mind when going about your household tasks.
Some customers have noted that the monitor caused interference with their internet connection, however these cases are rare and on the whole customers have been highly impressed by the Tommee Tippee monitor’s range.
Battery Life: ⅘ Stars
The Tommee Tippee Baby Monitor has good battery Life that lasts 8-10 hours when using constant audio transmission and occasional video screen use.
What really sets this baby monitor apart is that the camera unit can also run off batteries.
It accepts AAs (although none are provided with the purchase) which is great for when you are on holiday, travelling, or staying at a friend’s house where there may not be a conveniently located mains plug socket around.
The unit needs to be charged for a full 10 hours when first opened in order to get the most out of the battery.
Screen: ¾ Stars
The 3 inch screen is small and compact but large enough for an effective view of your baby.
The LCD display is well laid out and easy to use and we love that you can check the room temperature in the nursery at any time.
This is just another feature that shows how well the designers of this monitor understand the fears and anxieties of new parents, and knowing that your child is neither too hot nor too cold is a great way to alleviate unnecessary stress.
Picture Quality: ¾ Stars
The picture quality on the Tommee Tippee baby monitor is certainly not HD, but the colour picture is clear enough to be effective and allows you a good view of your child as they sleep (or don’t sleep!).
Although not perfect, it is adequate for you to see what is going on inside the cot or cradle.
The monitor also has an infrared mode for night vision which is really handy, particularly as you will most probably be looking at your child whilst they are lying in the dark.
Some parents have found that in this infrared mode the image is more clear and easy to make out.
The screen only stays on for 20 seconds at a time, which is a battery saving feature.
However, it also stops anxious parents from endlessly watching their sleeping child and encourages you to get back to whatever you were doing before.
The screen automatically comes on when any movement or sound is detected so you can rest assured that you are unlikely to miss anything important.
Camera Angle and Positioning: ¾ Stars
Any parent will be familiar with the frustration of having set up the baby monitor only to find that your child has wriggled completely out of shot.
This problem is not entirely solved by the Tommee Tippee monitor, however it does go a long way towards solving it.
The camera can be tilted up and down on a vertical plane, although it does not have any adjustability on a horizontal plane.
The unit does not offer a wall mount option like many other baby monitors do, which is a shame as this usually allows you to get the best possible view of the cot.
Instead, the Tommee Tippee monitor should be set on a flat surface between 1 and 1.5 meters away from the cot or cradle.
The camera does not capture a wide angle view of the cot so should be positioned carefully if you want to avoid having to creep back into the nursery to adjust it.
It does come with a tripod mount that can be attached to the bars of a cot, however it is harder to gain a good view of the cot from this close angle.
Audio Quality: ⅘ Stars
The audio quality on the Tommee Tippee baby monitor is really great so neither you nor your child have to put up with annoying pops and crackles throughout the night.
The volume settings can be adjusted to as loud or quiet as you like in order to keep an ear on your baby’s mummerings.
The microphone has good sensitivity and the relay is clear and does not distort the sound like so many baby monitors tend to do.
Better still, the Tommee Tippee baby monitor has a two way talk back function which allows you to speak to your baby even when you are down in the living room watching Netflix.
As the sound of your voice is well relayed your child will not feel frightened by a strange, distorted voice but instead can feel calmed and soothed by your familiar tone.
This function is great for settling your baby just before they rouse themselves, and saves you the energy of having to go up and down the stairs repeatedly.
Motion Sensor Mat: ¾ Stars
One of the unique features of this baby monitor set is the movement sensor mat.
This mat is lined with delicate sensors which detect the slightest movement, including your baby’s breathing. If it does not detect any motion for 20 seconds a loud alarm sounds on the parent unit.
This feature is designed to provide peace of mind for parents who worry about the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) and other cases of infant illness and mortality, however, it is most certainly not a medical device and should in no way be seen as a substitute to thorough parental supervision.
Overall, this feature reduces stress levels and allows parents to sleep more soundly, which is vitally important as sleep is so precious and rare when a newborn baby is in the house.
The mat has an adjustable sensitivity setting which can be changed to suit various mattress thicknesses. On the back of the nursery unit there is a switch that can be set at low, medium or high sensitivity.
Many parents have noted that the pad can be much too sensitive in general and causes unnecessary stress by sounding the alarm frequently throughout the night.
Some parents have even opted to disconnect the sensor mat as their child becomes older. It certainly seems that the mat is most useful for newborn infants, and less useful for older babies and toddlers.
The mat has a power cord that poses a strangulation hazard unless the mat is properly contained in its cover whilst in use.
Parents have also noted that it is a fairly small mat which babies tend to outgrow after 6 months of age.
We recommend the use of this mat with very young and newborn babies, but it becomes a hassle once they are 6 months and above and is more of a pain than a benefit from then on.
Extra Features: ⅘ Stars
The Tommee Tippee baby monitor has a soft glow night light feature built into the nursery unit.
The quality of the light is gentle enough not to wake or distract your baby, but also provides enough light for them to not feel completely plunged into darkness.
It is a lovely little addition to the unit which actually proves really handy when you pop in to check on your baby too.
Another extra feature that we really love is the Tommee Tippee baby monitor’s paging function. This really is a feature that has been designed for exhausted parents who are suffering from a serious baby brain!
When you lose or misplace the parent unit of the monitor you can activate the paging function so it beeps and buzzes, allowing you to locate it again. You will be surprised how often this function comes in handy!!
Overall Verdict: 3.5 / 5 Stars
We love the Tommee Tippee Back to Nature Baby Monitor for its excellent connectivity, range, video and audio quality and fun extra features.
Although the movement sensor mat is somewhat superfluous after your baby is 6 months old, the monitor set affords new parents great peace of mind and allows you to sleep soundly knowing that your baby is sleeping soundly too.