Cheapest way to rig up long distance baby monitor?

Not for a baby, in this case, but I am looking for a way to cheaply set up a long distance video monitor to watch over my mother at night, who is in a very fragile state of health.

Must be able to transmit video from her house to my house (about a 1/2 mile distance).

Ideas for how to do this as cheaply as possible?

Internet accessible web camera? Some can be accessed from your smart phone and can notify you if there’s movement on a certain area.

IP security camera

Get long distance two-way radios (walkie-talkies). Have one radio in your mother’s house and figure out a way to hold down the PTT button. Viola, long distance baby monitor!

Assuming internet service is available, Google “WiFi security camera” for all sorts of options, starting around $30.

Might be challenging to meet the OP’s “must be able to transmit video” requirement with this scheme.

Well, if you’re an amateur radio operator you could rig a TV transmitter using the 6 meter or higher band. But it ain’t cheap.

I’m with Xema - there are all sorts of apps and things available to do this - it’s a non-uncommon requirement for new and anxious parents to keep a remote eye on the babysitter.

a good search term is “nanny cam”

I missed out on the video part. I just read baby monitor. In that case, I don’t know about video solutions.

Use an old iPhone or a PC with webcam, set up Skype video - I assume there’s an “auto-answer” option. If not, I’m sure some similar software is available. Also, as mentioned, security cameras are specifically designed for this sort of thing; I vaguely recall one item that would allow you to see and talk to whoever was ringing the doorbell no matter where you are in the world.

(The advantage of Skype or similar is they connect to a central server, so you don’t need to know your personal home IP address)

Yea, my guess would be you’ll want an Android tablet with a built-in camera - my son got a simple version of this for Christmas for less than $50 - and Skype or some sort of video monitoring app. There’s millions of apps in the store, surely someone’s got something for free or for a few bucks that’ll suit your needs.

TLDR: Android or a PC are not good solutions for this.

They are more expensive, and they aren’t designed for continual 24/7 unmonitored usage. Unless you’re a computer geek, it’s going to be hard to remotely maintain such a setup. What are you going to do when a Windows or Android update rolls out and forces an automatic restart? Are you going to rely on your sickly mother to swipe through the post-update notes, restart the application, reconnect it, reposition the device to be optimally placed, etc.? Or if your wifi connection goes down for a while and the system thinks it’s no longer there and stops trying to reconnect to it, forcing a manual reconnect? Or when the Android camera sensor overheats and the image gets all fucked up because it was never designed with sufficient cooling for 24/7 usage? Or when she turns off the lights and you can’t see anything because it doesn’t come with IR illumination like many security cameras do? Just not a good idea.

Seriously, look into the IP/Wifi/nanny (same thing) security cameras purposely designed for this usage.

You got a point. Since OP just specified some basic requirements like for who and from how far, I’d might advise to search help from security professionals - those who operate security cameras on large scales. They might have reasonable solution on smaller scale.

This isn’t some enterprise-level schtick where you’re trying to secure the KGB against alien time travelers or something. There are dozens of these cameras for less than $50 on Amazon, many with 4+ star reviews. It’s not a novel requirement…

Agree again. But have you ever installed this kind of survey?

Neither did I.

Won’t be 50$. I am sure.

Well, the cheapie IP webcams run about $50-$60. Perfectly adequate if all you want to do is stream a live video feed over the Internet. This would require that your mother subscribe to broadband or some other always-on connection, though. It would also require some know-how to configure your DSL/Cable/whatever device to make the webcam accessible over the Internet.