Yup, those baby monitors are a must have. I don't think it matters if you get sound only or video, just get one. As much as your logical mind might think you don't need one, once that baby is home, you will find that you have a monitor growing from your hand.
I didn't watch "Friends" religiously but I recall that after Rachel had her baby that people were critical that after a few episodes the baby disappeared. Instead Rachel just walked around with a baby monitor in hand. I can only assume that Rachel's baby was a wonderful baby who actually slept without someone holding her. Unlike my daughter.
But seriously, you want that monitor in hand once you put the baby down so you can relax a bit, do the dishes, or watch "Project Runway" without straining to hear the rustle of the baby. Plus if you're like most young parents if you DON'T hear anything you run to the room to check on the lil one.
I live in a multi-unit building, so I actually ended up using the monitor to do things like go to the basement to pick up laundry, go upstairs to visit neighbors for a few minutes, or let the dog outside. So yes, I highly encourage the monitor for those of you with stairs and want to escape your own ears' hearing radius.