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VTech VM3254 Full 2.8inch Colour Video Baby Monitor review: Mumsnetters' best budget video baby monitor, tried and tested

Highly and frequently recommended in the Mumsnet forums, the VTech VM3254, we put the bargain video baby monitor through its paces.

By Poppy O'Neill | Last updated Jan 2, 2024

Price on writing: £50 | Buy now from Argos

What we like

  • Great price

  • Trusted brand

  • Clear picture

  • Reliable signal

  • Good sound quality

  • Night vision

  • Two-way talk

  • Mains or battery powered

  • Long battery life

What we don’t like

  • Slight sound delay

  • Can be too sensitive to noises

Related: The best baby monitors, tried and tested

How we tested

We consulted with users of the Mumsnet Talk forums to find out more about the baby monitors Mumsnetters have bought themselves and recommend highly. After all, if anyone can give honest advice on the baby products they swear by, it's the parents who have tested these products through vigorous, long-term use.

Once we compiled a shortlist of the top baby monitors Mumsnetters recommended, we then interviewed our parent tester, in order to get their insights into what it was about the VTech VM3254 that makes it stand out. We asked them all about their experiences with the baby monitor, including the ease of set up, picture quality. Value for money and user-friendliness. Through turning to real, independent Mumsnet users for reviews, we ensure we get honest opinions and feedback from people just like you.

VTech VM3254 - Overview

Video quality

Sound quality

Night vision

Signal range

Battery life

Value for money

Key specs

Price on writing: £50 | Video: Yes | Resolution: High | Range: 300 metres | Two-way talk: Yes | Night vision: Yes | Sound alerts: Yes | Motion alerts: No | App control: No | Screen size: 2.8-inch colour LCD screen

What’s the picture quality like?

When compared with monitors twice its price, the VTech VM3254 can certainly hold its own. While the resolution of the monitor isn’t available online - it’s simply listed as ‘high definition’ - our tester was impressed with the quality of the video - both day and night. 

The night vision is good, as is the day time picture, it’s so much better than our old monitor.

For parents who want the peace of mind that comes with a video baby monitor, but prefer to spend under £100, this monitor has everything you need. While more expensive devices offer breathing monitoring and movement alerts, the VTech VM3254 keeps it simple, with responsive day and night-vision video feed that allows you to check in with your child any time you want. 

What’s it like to use day-to-day?

The VTech VM3254 doesn’t have smartphone connectivity, so you’ll need to keep the parent unit nearby to keep in touch with your little one. The monitor is straightforward to set up and start using straight out of the box, with easy-to-follow instructions should you need them.

Everything was easy to set up. The instructions are clear and easy to read.

Aside from the video and audio, it has a number of extra features, including a nightlight, choice of 4 lullabies and two-way talk to enable you to shush or sing to your baby remotely. There’s also a temperature sensor so you can make sure your baby’s room isn’t too hot or too cold.

Both the baby and parent units can be powered by battery or plugged into the mains. The parental unit’s battery is rechargeable but not replaceable, and batteries are included for the child unit, which is always a nice touch. 

The monitor is WiFi-free, which many parents prefer for security and reliability reasons. However, our tester found there was a delay on the sound reaching the parental unit. She also took marks off for sensitivity - the monitor sometimes picked up noises other than her baby, including its own white noise function, which isn’t ideal. 

I can hear clearly but I find there is a delay in the sound reaching me and that it’s too sensitive to other noise setting it off, including its own white noise.

Speaking of sound alerts, the monitor has a three-level sound indicator, with a green light for quieter noises, amber for louder and red for full-on crying. 

Read next: The best breast pumps, as recommended by Mumsnetters

Is the VTech VM3254 good value for money?

For £50, this video baby monitor is a steal, and it’s the price that’s attracted so many Mumsnetters to buy it. While the VM3254 may not boast all the bells and whistles of other, £100+ video monitors, it has the main functions parents are looking for in a modern monitor. 

However, our tester took points off for the sound lag and over-sensitivity, which we think is fair enough. We think the VM3254 is perfect for those looking for a video monitor on a shoestring, but if you want your budget to go further and aren’t fussed about video, you can spend half the price on a high-quality audio-only monitor like the Motorola AM21

On balance, we have to hand it to this cheap and cheerful gadget: the VTech VM3254 reigns supreme as Mumsnetters’ best budget video baby monitor. 

Read next: The best travel cots for babies and toddlers

About Mumsnet reviews

All Mumsnet product reviews are written by real people after weeks of research and testing. We work hard to provide honest and independent advice you can trust. Sometimes, we earn revenue through affiliate (click-to-buy) links in our articles. However, we never allow this to influence our coverage.

About the author

Poppy O'Neill is a Content Editor at Mumsnet and a mother of two. She's been researching and reviewing baby and child products for 2 years, with a particular focus on baby essentials, toys and books for toddlers and outdoor play equipment. From potties to paddling pools and bunk beds to bedtime stories, she loves to deep-dive into research and find the best products out there.

Poppy is also an award-winning, best-selling children's and parenting author of books such as Don't Worry, Be Happy, The Extraordinary Book That Makes You Feel Happy and Mother Power. She specialises in children's mental health and her books are used by therapists, teachers and SENCOs across the UK. She won a The Week Junior Book Award in 2023, her books have been translated into several languages and she's been featured in The Guardian, The Sunday Times and The Sun.

After earning a BA in Creative Writing from the University of Leeds and a PGCert in Fashion and Lifestyle Journalism from University of the Arts London, she worked in fashion for most of her 20s. When her children were young, she undertook an MA in Creative Writing from the University of Chichester and re-trained as an author and freelance writer.