Last Updated: May 18, 2023 @ 3:14 pm.

What is the best baby monitor that doesn't have WiFi? And why would you want a monitor like that? We tried out 13 models to find the best bets. Which had the best picture quality? Good range? Here are the ones we think are best.

FYI: We've been reviewing and rating products for the home and families since 1994. We don't take money or freebies from the brands we review. Our work is 100% reader-supported!

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Best Large Screen

Great battery life
Excellent night vision and picture quality are the star features here. We liked the sensitive sound detection, but critics note the field of view is somewhat narrower than some competitors.

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Best Large Screen: Baby Monitor bonoch Video Baby Monitor with Camera and Audio

Let’s talk baby monitors!

Baby monitors today come in two flavors: WiFi and no WiFi.

This refers to how the camera and monitor are connected. Some folks like WiFi monitors since they can monitor baby’s nursery from outside the house. On the downside, WiFi monitors have had security issues in the past and that’s led to stories about monitors being hacked. And the apps that come with WiFi monitors are notorious for glitches.

A closed system monitor that doesn’t use WiFi instead sends a signal to the monitor via radio frequencies (most typically 2.4 GHz). Most baby monitors use encrypted signals to prevent eavesdropping. 

The most affordable baby video monitors without WiFi have rather small screens—some as tiny at 2.4″. If you spend a bit more money, you get a larger screen . . . this also enables to see more of what’s going on the nursery as the resolution of these monitors is also higher.

We tried out 13 current models on the market today before picking this model as the best large screen baby monitor without WiFi: bonoch (the brand refers to itself in lower case).

This monitor had the best picture quality among those we tested—and the price is still easy on the wallet. Here’s more: 

What We Liked

• Easy to set up.

• Point/tilt/zoom.

• Night vision is excellent.

• Top picture quality among the monitors we tested.

• Large 5″ screen compared to other models.

• No WiFi.

What Needs Work

• Range can be limited. Yes, the maker states a 1000 foot range, but that is with no obstructions. In the real world, we got about half that.

• Buttons could be easier to press.

• Tilt is only 120 degrees—that can make it hard to see an entire room.

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Best Budget-Friendly

Easy to set up
No-frills monitor gets the job done without breaking the bank. Sure, the 2.8" screen is small, but the night vision is decent. Caveat: battery life is short.

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Best Budget Friendly: Vtech Video Baby Monitor

Yes, baby video monitors can get rather pricey, with some models approaching a mortgage payment!

But if you don’t need any fancy features or large screens, this model offers good picture quality at a price that is easy on the wallet. We liked the decent night vision and there are even extras like two-way talk, a feature you normally see on more pricey monitors.

What We Liked

 Super easy to set up.

• Night vision is good.

• Clear picture.

• Good range.

• Two-way talk, intercom feature.

• 6 levels of sound.

What Needs Work

• Small 2.8″ color screen.

• Voice-activated feature (VOX) takes a lot of noise to trigger.

• Battery life is very short—we got about an hour. That’s nowhere near the nine hours claimed by the maker. That said, if you plan to leave this monitor plugged in by your bedside all night, then it works fine.

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Best 2 Cameras

Great for twins
We loved the large five-inch monitor and ability to split-screen between the two HD cameras. Battery life is excellent, but dissenters wish the audio was a bit louder.

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Best 2 Cameras: 5” HD Split-Screen Baby Monitor

If you’ve got twins or just two young children that need to be monitored, this model came out tops in our testing. Yes, you get two cameras that can point/tilt/zoom and the picture quality is great. The split-screen parent monitor enables you to see both cameras at once.

What We Liked

• Point/tilt/zoom.

• Decent night vision.

• Clear image with good picture quality.

• Easily flips from one camera to the other or use as split screen.

• Great for twins.

What Needs Work

• Audio could be louder.

• Zoom function can pixelate the image.

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Best Monitor With Camera And Audio

Excellent night vision mode
If you don't need fancy features, this simple monitor should do the trick—gets the job done with a parent unit that fits in your pocket. Easy to set up.

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Best Monitor With Camera And Audio: Video Baby Monitor with Digital Camera

Sometimes simpler is better.

Take baby monitors. Some models have the ability to tilt and point to see around a playroom. That’s nice, but if you just want to monitor the crib in a nursery, a simple fixed camera can do the trick . . . at a price that is much easier on the wallet.

This model performed well in our tests—good picture quality and a compact parent unit you can stick in a pocket. Here’s more:

What We Liked

• Good night vision.

• Picture is great for the price.

• Wall mount option.

• Two-way intercom feature.

• Easy to set up.

What Needs Work

• Small 2.4″ color screen. On the flip side, this makes the parent unit small enough to fit in a pocket . . . so there is the trade-off!

• Digital 2x zoom is less than other models in this category.

About the Authors

Denise & Alan Fields are consumer advocates and best-selling authors. The Fields have authored 12 books with three million copies in print, including the best-selling guide to baby gear, Baby Bargains.

The Fields have been featured and quoted in the New York TimesWall Street Journal and Los Angeles Times.

As consumer products experts, the Fields have been guests on the NBC Today Show, Good Morning America and ABC’s 20/20.

How We Pick Products To Recommend

We often turn to our readers (3 million strong!) to find products to recommend. We ask our parent readers for their favorites and consider their real-world experiences in our recommendations.

When we test a product, we always purchase it with our own monies. We do not take free samples, as we believe that compromises our independence.

We also fact check manufacturer information with our own measurements. If a maker claims a product weighs X pounds, we will weigh it to make sure. If the battery life is supposed to be six hours, we will see how it stands up in the real world.

In some cases, we will do interviews with experts in the field to get additional feedback on products.

To get hands-on time with products, we regularly meet one-on-one with gear companies and even tour manufacturing facilities. (When we do this, we pay our own travel expenses).

Why Trust Us

We’ve been rating and reviewing products for the home and families since 1994. We do extensive research, evaluating products with an eye toward quality, ease of use and affordability.

We make our living from affiliate commissions, but we always recommend what we think are the best bets for our readers (not the ones that are the most expensive). We are always looking for products that offer the best bang for the buck.

Our independence is a key reason why we have been doing this so long. As we mentioned above, when we purchase a product for hands-on testing, we do so with our own money.

Here’s another key point: we don’t take money from the brands we review. No free samples, no sponsors, no “partnerships.” Our work is 100% reader-supported!

Baby Bargains: Your Baby Registry Cheat Sheet is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to and its related sites. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.