video monitors – for security and watching the kiddos

When we were pregnant with Simon my husband was on the road a lot for work so we decided to look for a video monitoring system that would allow him to peek in on me and the baby from the road. At the time we went with Foscam and it worked well but was a PAIN to set up. When we moved to our current house and were expecting our second we wanted to add a monitor for her, and add some security cameras, so we briefly tried the Arlo system but there was too much of a delay (and the whole system was expensive) so we started looking again. That’s when my husband found YI Cameras which we have had since April of this year and we absolutely love them!!!

*I use Amazon affiliate links in this post which means when someone purchases something from one of my links I get a small commission – but all of these items was purchased by me and loved by me and I’m sharing the info with you!

So, here’s the gist, these cameras are around $40, an absolute breeze to set up, and work so well! I can’t really speak to the set up because my husband did it, but a friend just got one to keep an eye on her dogs and she said it was super easy to set up!

They need WiFi to work, but you don’t have to be on your home WiFi to view the cameras from the app. Meaning I can check in on the kiddos when they are home with a babysitter (and check on the house when I am on trips)! With our first camera (Foscam) there was a way to set it up to view away from home, but it took a ton of work, calls to our internet provider, etc… It was so annoying that we didn’t even worry about it after we moved, so then we could only view when we were on our home WiF and I really missed being able to check in when I was away from home.

There are two different kinds of YI Cameras, one is a pan/tilt/zoom and we have that in Simon’s room so we can move the camera (from the app on our phone) to see every part of the room. The other has a 111° wide-angle lens so it is more fixed but you can see a wide view of a room. We have those in the living room, garage and Betsy’s room. They both record in 720p HD, have night vision, 2-way audio (built-in microphone and speaker so we can hear what’s going on and talk to the kids through the monitor), and they support adding up to a 32GB SD micro SD card (we did 16gb in ours) so you can record activity and not pay a monthly hosting fee. We added micro SD cards to all of ours and I love being able to go back in time, see when there was movement/activity, and review it (super fun for seeing the police car lights zoom past my garage door when a police chase went right through my yard!).

Chris Loves Julia talked about these in their blog post My Newborn Must-Haves (and Nice-to-Haves) and here is a great review on the cameras from Slash Gear

There are tons of pros and no cons in my opinion. The price is unbelievable, they are easy to set up, and there is no monthly fee or subscription.

YI Dome Camera Pan/Tilt/Zoom Wireless IP Security Surveillance System 720p HD Night Vision (US Edition) (number one best seller on Amazon for Dome Surveillance Cameras)

YI Home Camera Wireless IP Security Surveillance System (US Edition) (number one best seller on Amazon for Surveillance Camera Lenses)

SanDisk 16GB or 32GB Mobile MicroSDHC Class 4 Flash Memory Card With Adapter

AC Outlet Mount for YI Home Camera (we used this as an easy mount for our garage camera where we have outlets halfway up the wall)

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