The Samsung SEW-3040 Wireless Baby Monitor is an extremely compact baby monitor with great resolution and even better sound. Best of all, it’s pretty easy to use. I originally purchased the SEW-3040 before a trip abroad, and found it was perfect for my needs, both at home and when on the road. I chose this monitor because I wanted the best wireless baby monitor.
You should also know that this is not a stand alone review. I actually tested a few and bought two prior to the Samsung SEW 3040 from reputable brands ( V-tech and Levana) which I sold because 1) the advertised range wasn't even close to reality and 2) the image quality was not good. Based on experience let me explain why I believe this is probably the best baby monitor for travel in the market.
UPDATE APRIL 2018: Samsung no longer sells the SEW 3040, and have updated their line to the Wisenet Babyview 305x line, with the 3053 being the closest to the one reviewd in this page. I spoke with Samsung and in a nutshell they say that the most relevant differences are that 1) The new monitors are touchscreen 2) they are all 1080 HD and 3) they pan, tilt, play lullabies and take daily pictures . If you have any questions about the monitor (which we've been using for 12 months already) feel free to drop me a message in the comments section at the bottom or send me an email. We are still using it and it still works perfectly despite having dropped the camera at least four times from the wall mount. I still sustain it was the best purchase we could have done. Highly recommended!
Starting with the technical aspects of the monitor, the SEW-3040 performs very well in terms of vision and audio. The LCD monitor itself is 4.3 inches, making it somewhat larger than most of its competitors. The resolution is 640 x 480 pixels, which is pretty decent for a screen of this size. Basically, its a crystal clear image, and you won’t need to squint to see what’s happening in the other room. There’s also a 2x zoom available. The only one complaint is the color isn’t perfect, but personally I don’t see this as much of a big deal.
For low light conditions, the SEW-3040 has built in night vision. It uses infra-red LED, and can see clearly for up to 15 feet in total darkness. It’s not a bad little feature, and means there’s never any need to wake the house up by putting the lights on in the middle of the night. The sound is even better than the video, and is surprisingly clear. The unit actually has a maximum decibel level of 106db, which is much higher than any other baby monitors I’ve seen so far. There’s almost no white noise, and I couldn’t hear any distortion at any volume level. Unlike many other baby monitors, the audio on the SEW-3040 is two way, meaning you can speak to your baby from the parent unit. It’s not a bad little addition, and seems to work fairly well.
Moving on to the signal, the parent unit has a maximum range of 900 feet. Bear in mind this is a maximum range that assumes there’s nothing blocking the signal between the camera and the parent unit. In reality, in most homes the signal will have to travel through a wall or two, and as a general rule every wall means that the range drops about 50%. Nonetheless, you can expect to get at least around 200 feet of range from the SEW-3040, which is more than most of its competitors. It uses a 2.4 GHz frequency, which is extremely secure. This means the connection won’t be interrupted by other electronic devices like televisions and radios.I find this to be a determining factor when looking for the best baby monitor for travel, and is the main reason I did not keep my previous two purchases.
The Samsung SEW 3040 is also almost impossible to hack, so that’s a nice little plus for anyone who’s security conscious. The connection works just as well with multiple cameras. The parent unit can connect to a total of four cameras in different rooms. You’ll just have to make sure to place the parent unit where it’s within 800 feet of each camera, and you should get a great signal. If you find yourself needing extra range, try moving the antenna around a bit.
Switching between cameras can be done instantly from the parent unit. It’s also possible to set up the monitor with a quad split display, so you can watch all four screens at once. With four cameras set up like this, I'd feel a bit like a security guard; while it's a nice feature I don't think I need it for the time being. Indeed, this is where the extra big screen will shine; on a smaller screen like the ones I’ve seen on other monitors you’d need a magnifying glass to make use of the quad view. Even in the middle of the night, I don't have any problems making out what’s going on.
Ease of Use
The simplicity of the SEW-3040 is the main reason I feel it’s probably the best baby monitor for travel around. The monitor can be set up in minutes. Unlike most baby monitors, the SEW-3040’s parent monitor has an auto connect feature. It’ll automatically connect to any of your cameras in range, meaning you won’t need to fiddle around with manually configuring anything. If you aren't particularly tech savvy you'll really appreciate this feature. Another aspect of the SEW-3030 that I quite like is the simple menu. The SEW-3040 can do a lot of stuff, but nothing takes more than two clicks. Whether it’s zooming in, changing cameras or switching to infra-red, nothing seems particularly complicated. This might not seem like a big deal, but let me put it this way: how many buttons do you feel like pressing at 2 am in the morning? The SEW-3040 keeps everything streamlined and simple, and that’s exactly how I like it.
The SEW-3040 isn’t particularly complicated, though it does have a few little bells and whistles. My favorite 2 are probably the belt clip and the VOX mode. The clip allows me to carry the parent unit around the house (it also has a stand). When using the VOX mode there's an auto sleep feature to save power. Like most monitors, it’s sound activated, so you’ll immediately know when your baby is crying. When configured properly, this feature works great, and doesn’t pick up any background noise like doors closing, or the car driving up the driveway. Of course, it’s also possible to manually activate the screen with the push of a button or with a clap. Another useful feature is the ability to manually move the camera around from the parent unit. It’s possible to pan the camera 300 degrees, and tilt it up to 100 degrees. This is plenty of movement space to cover the average room. In case you’re wondering, the camera itself has a field of view of 56 degrees. As I mentioned, it’s also possible to zoom in a little with the 2x zoom feature.
Samsung has an aurora of quality around it, and the SEW-3040 doesn’t disappoint. So far, mine has worked just fine, with no bugs or issues. Some other users have complained the parent unit can make a weird whirring sound if the sensor settings aren’t configured properly. This is an easy fix, and it’s just a matter of making sure the sensors are set up correctly. The instruction manual is quite useful here. The unit itself feels quite durable. I wouldn’t recommend dropping it, though it doesn’t look like it’ll break easily. If you do happen to have any problems, remember Samsung provides a one year warranty. Generally, I’ve heard they’re pretty good about honoring the warranty, so that’s some nice peace of mind.
When looking at the reviews in Amazon or other websites you'll see that people complain about the lack or range and/or poor image quality. I'm sure many of them are running into the same problem I used to have at the beginning: I forgot to bring the antenna up, which makes all the difference. As for the image quality, I'm not sure what users are experiencing or expecting but I'm very happy with it, and they quality is great when compared with the other models I bought and used.
I also made this short video for you to be able to see judge the image and sound quality.
Appearance and Aesthetic
The look of a baby monitor really isn’t a deal breaker, though it’s worth mentioning the Samsung SEW-3040 actually looks pretty decent. Despite having a pretty large screen, the parent unit itself is extremely slim, and pretty compact. It doesn’t take up much space on my bedside cupboard, and doesn’t weight me down when worn on a belt. It’s also possible to mount the parent unit on a wall, if you’d rather keep it somewhere obvious, where it can’t get lost.
One final thing I really love about the SEW-3040 is the battery. Unlike some cheaper models, the SEW-3030 doesn’t have to be plugged in all the time. The battery lasts around 6 hours, depending on how much time the parent unit is asleep. This isn’t really enough battery life to last an entire night, though it’s more than enough for nap time, or just to keep on you while you’re doing chores around the house. I tend to keep the parent unit plugged in overnight, and just make use of the battery during the day when I’m hanging around the house.
If the SEW-3040 has one major drawback, it’s the price. It tends to hover around $160, which might put some people off, but there's a lot of value. I ended up forking out this amount because the cheaper options simply did not meet my demands. I feel this was a pretty good move, given how well the SEW-3040 performs, and it's certainly not the most expensive around either. This is pretty much the best baby monitor for travel , and reliable all round. It’d be possible to save a little upfront cash with a cheaper alternative, but personally I’d rather pay slightly more for something that I know will do the job right.
The Best Wireless Baby Monitor for Travel
The Samsung SEW-3040 is a great baby monitor both for travel and at home, with the perfect balance of features and simplicity. For such a small device, it does a lot, yet somehow manages to remain easy to use – even when half asleep! I particularly love the fact that the SEW-3040 can be hooked up to three additional cameras, and it’s extremely easy to switch between them, or move individual cameras around. The screen is big enough to provide a decent image, but the parent unit is compact enough to be comfortable wearing around the house. It also happens to look nice. The only real drawback might be the price which is somewhat higher than some competitors. However, based on my experience and given the reliability and simplicity of the SEW-3040, I think it’s worth every cent.
I paid full price for the baby monitor- it was not given to me for this review. This said, if you liked the review and plan on buying the monitor please help me maintain this blog and bring you more product reviews by using one of the links on this post or use this one Samsung Babyview 3053 on Amazon. It won't cost you extra and I'll make a small commission. Thanks! 🙂