Baby monitor. any recommendations?

Hi all just wanted to ask…
i need to buy a baby monitor … and it’s not about the money
i want something that will connect to openhab (pic on site map , sound ? , sensor data)
the only thing i can think of is DIY … but the wife wants something reliable, and its the first time i agree :slight_smile:

any end solution that can work also with OH with full features?
i can see this page , but nothing about how is it to use it , can i relay on this?..
thanks !

First of all, congrats on the new addition to your family.

I use this camera.
Recommend any camera in the Amcrest or Dahua range with a built in mic, or Foscam also has audio alarms but with only 3 settings for the threshold so you may find it harder to set the alarm when you have a noise machine playing in the room hence why I prefer the first two brands as they have more control. Get a 2mp camera only as the higher res cameras have more noise (aka snow) with night vision, applies to all camera brands…

Then use this binding.

Then either buy a tablet or a google home hub to use as your screen. The binding can cast the video and audio to any chromecast via the Openhab chromecast binding so you can use a TV but it is more handy to watch a smaller screen whilst watching TV uninterrupted. I have a Samsung tablet as they have a good kids mode in them so when the baby monitor is no longer used the outdated tablet can be used for other tasks or perhaps a habpanel setup.

I really did not like the commercial solutions as they were far higher in price or had tiny low res screens and the camera looks ugly and will not be useful once your child grows up.

Thank you matt! will do

and please tell me
how do you hear sound ? on what UI do you view it?
i guess you use some camera UI ,and get only notifactions to OH?

can use a 100MB switch with POE or i will have issues?

I can hear sound either on my iPhone with the Openhab app, or also on my TV with a chromecast which can wake up the TV from an off state. Most of the time I DO NOT WANT SOUND, a baby crying is one of the most annoying sounds and why someone would want to listen to it I have no idea :slight_smile:

We also play white noise in the room when the baby is asleep so the last thing I wanted was to hear this non stop. The approach is very different as you set the threshold as to how loud the baby has to cry before Openhab lets us know, this way we have a silent home and enjoy watching a movie and when the crying starts we either get a notification like…

  1. A small text message on the TV screen in the corner.
  2. A notification alert to our phones.
  3. A light can blink or change colour.
  4. You could display the cameras stream on a google home hub sitting on your table that only starts when the alarm is triggered. All up to you and how you set it up.

If sound is important I would probably lean towards a google home hub and cast the video stream to it which can be done with voice like “hey google turn on baby monitor”. An android tablet may be harder to get going with HLS support.

This is why Amcrest or Dahua is great as you can fine tune the audio alarm to be just above the white noise machine if you wish. You could move the camera further away or closer for a similar effect but this is far better.

The camera comes with their own app but I have blocked them with a firewall and only use Openhab, but you could use them as a fall back. In the readme for the binding you will find some of the rules and items/sitemaps that I use.

That is how I do it, I have it POE from a switch and feed directly to Openhab via the binding. a 100mb switch is also fine.

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Hi Matt a little of topic but since you are the god.of the ip camera binding could you recommend the best in your view outdoor poe some camera to work with your binding. 8mp if possible.

Many thanks

Welcome to Openhab and the forum!

By posting in a thread about baby monitors you probably wont get input from other people, this is why it is best to open a new thread of your own so more people see it and contribute…

Sorry I have only used a single model from two brands so have very little experience with different camera hardware, I suggest you read the countless threads of people asking that question here.

I suggest that you stick to a brand that has an open API which is listed in the very first post of the ip camera binding thread and read what features from each brand is currently implemented as I keep that post up to date.

Before choosing you really need to consider the location that you are installing it in and why you want the camera. Is night vision important? Does it have streetlights that make starlight cameras worth while? Or is that feature less usefull as it is pitch black at night.

You will learn about placement of cameras and how a 2mp camera at night can give a better picture due to the pixel VS sensor area ratio. If your goal is to ID people at 6m+ from the camera then a high res camera will be needed.

h265 is great to have especially with high res cameras to keep the storage space needed lower, however if you want to cast the cameras to a non 4k Chromecast, then you will need to turn both off and use 1080p resolution on at least 1 of the substreams. Read the cameras manual carefully as often to get access to mjpeg or 3 streams you need to sacrifice certain features as the current range of cameras are limited and you often have to choose what is more important.

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Thank you very much for your time and your great advice and links.


Hi, as the link is not working anymore and some days are past. Is Dahua still most recommended?

I don’t think it was ever “most recommended”, per Matt’s post above from June 2019.

The best resource is his IPCamera thread, but I don’t know how up to date it is.

The link @rpwong gave is the best place, in particular…

  • Audio Alarm THRESHOLD control feature with Dahua and Instar (100 levels of control), Foscam HD (3 levels only).

Instar is a German company and their cameras. Have good threshold controls. Foscam are not putting their Api in all cameras.
With Dahua you also get noise reduction bulit into the camera and this is handy to filter out a white noise machine if you plan to use one next to your child. Monitor the live feed without having to listen to the white noise all the time.

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HI @matt1 ,

thanks so much for that input and sorry for the very late answer.
It seems then Dahua is the best choice.
I’ve found the model below which might be not too bad for the usecase.
The only thing which is not quite clear to me is where to i have to look at if I want to make sure it contains the API?


The spec table shows it has yes marked against sdk and api supported. I don’t work for any company so do your own research. I found as the baby gets older having the camera able to move from bed to watching the room to see how the kids are playing nicely with each other was handy. Weigh up the cost of a PTZ model. Also the camera appears to be marked as End Of Line so security and bug fixes may not last even long.

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@matt1 i have another baby :slight_smile:
Hi all

how much as changed since then

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