You’ve seen the studies showing that sitting for long periods could be chopping years from your life, and you’ve decided it’s time to go for one of those standing desks. But which one?
The options are endless, from beautiful, expensive bamboo-topped wonders with electronic, adjustable raising/lowering, to cheap, functional designs, to converters you stick on top of an existing desk when you want to stand. Which to choose depends on how much you want to pay and how committed you are to the idea of a standing desk.
This list of “best” standing desks offers you a variety of desks that are very good for their price points. Not every one is the luxury Mercedes of standing desks (though some are), but all should make you feel good about your purchase.
Jarvis Bamboo Standing Desk – At a starting price of $395 or $475 (depending on style), this desk isn’t cheap, but there is a good reason it sits on just about every “best of” list when it comes to standing desks. It’s nice to look at, it’s adjustable (electronically, no hand crank), and it’s solid with little-to-no wobble. The adjustability of this desk means you can use it for standing or sitting as you prefer. (You’re not going to want to stand all the time.) And, in actuality, the price isn’t bad for the quality of the desk, but be careful — this company will try to upsell you on accessories and add-ons that aren’t really necessary. The standard 48″ x 30″ size is perfect for most people, but you can get it as large as 72″ x 30″.
Tranzendesk Manual Crank Standing Desks – Retailing for just about $300, these standing desks have a manual crank so you don’t have to worry about the electronics failing like some standing desks. Offers two styles — either dual-level with the keyboard and monitor at different heights, or a single-level desk.
Luxor Standup Desk – At around $130, this is a nice, cheap standing desk if you want the option to stand but don’t want to pay a lot. (There is actually an even cheaper option that is rather narrow but might be even better if your space is limited.) This is not an adjustable desk, so you are essentially choosing how high you want it to be when you first put it together. (Yes you have to assemble it yourself.) While it has a little bit of space for extras, you are mostly just going to be able to fit a monitor and keyboard on the upper shelves, and probably a printer on the bottom. Also, because it is not adjustable, you can only stand at this one; you can’t adjust it down and put a chair in front of it, so keep that in mind before you buy.
Mount-It Standing Desk Converter – This is not the most attractive converter (it looks sort of like my ironing board), but it does the job cheaply (about $130 at last check) if you want to convert an existing desk to standing. The upside is that it’s all manual in terms of adjusting the desk to fit your height, so you don’t have the worries about the breakdown of electronics like some of the high-end standing desks.
Ikea Bekant – We owe a debt of gratitude to Ikea for lowering the prices of standing desks a few years back when they introduced the Bekant. It’s an electronically-adjustable desk with the functional yet stylish look you would expect from Ikea, at a price that is now in line with many other desks in its class (but cheaper than many of these desks used to cost). If you read the reviews of this desk, even on the Ikea site, you will see that many people are complaining about the electronics giving out and the desk being no longer adjustable. While this may be true in some cases, it is also true that you have the potential for this to happen with any standing desk that uses electronics to raise/lower the desk. While we have no proof, we have a sneaking suspicion that Ikea competitors may be responsible for some of the negative reviews found online, the numbers of bad reviews just seem ridiculously high. Overall, we think the Bekant deserves mention, but the complaints do give us pause.