The Summer Infant Baby Wave Deluxe is an inexpensive sound monitor that offers some standard features and great indoor range working through 8 walls and up to 100 ft. This product is straightforward without a lof of fluff, but it isn't the best thing going, not even for the price. With the worst sound clarity in the group that is distorted unless you have it on the lowest volume setting, we suspect it isn't going to meet your needs for clearly hearing baby, especially during a deep or deprived sleep. Even if you need the maximum range possible, there is still a better option for you than the Baby Wave, making it a monitor we don't recommend.
Summer Infant Baby Wave Deluxe Review
Pros: Lower price, nice range
Cons: Distorted sound, short battery life
Manufacturer: Summer Infant
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|Pros||Lower price, nice range||Excellent sound clarity, lots of features, long battery life, price||Good sound clarity, easy to use, budget-friendly||Easy to use, nice range, inexpensive||Easier to use, lower price|
|Cons||Distorted sound, short battery life||Harder to use, shorter range||Limited features, average range||Limited features, short battery life||Fewer features, below average sound|
|Bottom Line||Inexpensive with disappointing sound and battery life that isn't as nice as cheaper options||Inexpensive, great sounding monitor with loads of features good for most families||A great price for those who favor ease of use and price over excess features||Super budget-friendly choice that gets the job done without any fuss||Unimpressive bare bones option with poor performance compared to similarly priced competition|
|Rating Categories||Baby Wave Deluxe||Vtech DM221||Philips Avent DECT...||Vtech DM111||Motorola MBP160|
|Sound Clarity (30%)|
|Ease Of Use (25%)|
|Battery Life (15%)|
|Specs||Baby Wave Deluxe||Vtech DM221||Philips Avent DECT...||Vtech DM111||Motorola MBP160|
|Indoor Range Test (walls & feet)||8 Walls 100 Feet||5 Walls 90 Feet||5 Walls 90 Feet||7 Walls 98 Feet||4 Walls 65 Feet|
|Open Field Range Test||1350 Feet||1325 Feet||1320 Feet||1350 Feet||1325 Feet|
|Manufacturer's Claimed Range (*buyer beware!)||650 Feet||1000 Feet||984 Feet||Not Listed||990 Feet|
|Communication Technology||Not Listed||DECT 6.0 Digital Technology||DECT Technology||DECT 6.0 Digital Technology||DECT Technology|
|Adjustable Mic Sensitivity||No||Yes||No||No||No|
|Sound Filtering Test Results||Very Poor||Excellent||Poor||Very Poor||Excellent|
|Max Sound||103.6 db||103.4 db||101 db||103.6 db||86.8 db|
|Parent Unit Battery Life||9 Hrs||46 Hrs||19 Hrs||13 Hrs||20 Hrs|
|Nursery Unit Battery Backup||No||No||No||No||No|
|EMF @ 6 Feet Nursery Unit||2.36 V/m||3.11 V/m||0.95 V/m||2.63 V/m||2.41 V/m|
|Out Of Range Alert||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Warranty||1 Year||1 Year||2 Years||1 Year||1 Year|
Our Analysis and Test Results
William Lockett III started the Summer Infant company in 1985, naming it after his baby Summer. The new father wanted somewhere to set his baby down while he did other things, so he created the original bouncy seat. Since the original bouncy seat, Summer Infant has made a wide range of baby gear including monitors, strollers, cribs, and bathtubs.
This graph shows overall scores for the all sound monitors included in our review. The Baby Wave Deluxe came in the last place out of 9 options.
The sections below include information on how the Baby Wave performed during testing. Individual metric scores determine the overall total with an emphasis on sound clarity and ease of use.
The Baby Wave earned a 4 of 10 for sound clarity. Four is the lowest score in the group for this metric. Alternatively, the Vtech DM222 earned a 10 which has a similar price point. Being able to clearly hear what is happening in your baby's room is the whole point of a sound monitor. A product that fails to offer clear sound is likely to cause frustration and wasted trips to baby's room.
The baby Wave had a maximum decibel level of 103.6 db, which is similar tot he other items we tested. However, it has a distorted staticky sound unless it is set to the quietest volume. This means deep sleeping parents may not hear baby at all. It also didn't perform well for noise cancellation or sound filtering with noise being transmitted to the parent unit of four out of the six settings.
Ease of Use
The Baby Wave earned a 6 of 10 for ease of use, which is below average and far below the Vtech DM111 that earned a 10 in this metric. The Baby Wave is easy to set up and is plug and play with no pairing required.
There isn't much to the Baby Wave. The power button is located on the front with the nightlight and talk button on the left side of the parent unit with the volume adjustment on the right. Adjusting the volume includes an audible beep that seems unnecessary and there is no indicator on the unit what the volume is or if you are moving it up or down, which would have been more useful than a beeping sound in the middle of the night that could wake up the other parent who is trying to sleep. With no other features, the Baby Wave is simple and straightforward without much guessing and should be easy to use int he middle of the night even when sleep deprived.
The baby Wave earned its top metric score for range with an 8 of 10. The manufacturer claimed a range of 650 ft which is usually a line of sight measurement, though Summer Infant didn't specify this.
In our tests, the Baby Wave worked up to 1350 ft outside in a line of sight with some static beyond 1000 ft. Indoors the Baby Wave worked through eight walls and 100 ft, though this might vary by depending on the kind of construction and other appliances that may interfere. The average distance was closer to five walls and 90 ft.
This makes the Baby Wave a potential option for larger homes with greater distance between the nursery and master bedroom. However, given the poor sound clarity, we think parents are still better off with a different unit.
The Baby Wave earned a 2 of 10 for battery life, which is the lowest score for this metric in the group. The parent unit battery life is about 9 hours on average after multiple uses. the manufacturer only claims 4-5 hours so it did perform better than expected, but all of the competition worked at least 13 hours with some as high as 20 or 30 hours before dying.
The Baby Wave earned a 6 of 10 for features. This is an average score when compared to the rest of the monitors. The Baby Wave offers a remotely activated nightlight and talk to baby two-way communication. It also has a room temperature sensor that wasn't very accurate in our tests with a variance of up to 8 degrees from the actual room temperature in one test.
The Baby Wave also has the following:
- Low battery alert
- Out of range alert
- Belt clip
- Sound level indicator
- Feeding timer
The average EMF reading for the Summer Infant monitor is 2.36 V/m at 6 ft from the unit. This is about average for the group. While not high or low this reading can be decreased by placing the baby unit as far from the baby as possible and still be functional. Unplugging the unit when not in use will also help limit your baby's exposure to EMF during other activities like diaper changes and playing.
— Juliet Spurrier, MD & Wendy Schmitz