Working from home is common in most jobs today. Whether you can forego commuting temporarily or permanently, having a home office or dedicated workspace has become important. You can work at the kitchen table if you want, but if you can swing even a small desk anywhere in the home, you’ll likely be more productive in the long run.
The room I put my desk in isn’t very spacious, but it has a unique shape and arrangement of the doors. I had to get creative because there are very few places where a desk can fit. Instead of moving into the garage, I opted for a compact desk with minimal build. Maybe you are in a similar situation. Below are some things to consider, aimed at Mac users, to make the most of your workspace without sacrificing productivity and equipment to keep your devices running. As always, the prices listed may fluctuate over time.
HumanCentric Vertical Laptop Stand
If you use a laptop connected to a monitor on your desk, you can save space by propping it up. The HumanCentric Vertical Laptop Stand can accommodate an Apple MacBook computer, as well as a range of other models from other manufacturers, up to 1 inch thick. No tools or adjustments are required to resize either.
This laptop holder is sleek and minimalistic so it shouldn’t clutter up your desk. The stand has rubber feet so it shouldn’t slide around even when docking or undocking a laptop. It is available in black, silver or space gray to match the various metals of modern Apple computers.
Buy from Amazon for $39.99.
Fully Jarvis Bamboo standing desk
The Fully Jarvis Bamboo Standing Desk can be electronically raised and lowered to accommodate the way you work. Like many other Fully desks, this one has a range of customizable sizes and options. This particular model is available in a small 24″ x 30″ desktop configuration as well as my favorite 24″ x 36″ size.
The bamboo for this desk comes from sustainable forestry. The device has a load capacity of 350 pounds and was fairly easy to assemble. My desk options were limited due to specific space constraints, but this one is sturdy and looks good.
Shop at Fully from $599.
Apple Studio display
After years of working directly from my MacBook Air, I decided it was time for a bigger screen. Instead of trading my computer in, I just plug it into Apple’s new Studio Display. Upgrading my screen from 13 inches to 27 inches obviously provides a more comfortable working experience, but this particular monitor also gets me better speakers, a microphone array, and a camera for video calls.
Combining these elements into one sleek monitor means this studio display doesn’t cost much more than the LG UltraFine 5K display, but doesn’t come with a tangle of cables.
Shop at Best Buy for $1,599.99.
Satechi 2-in-1 Headphone Stand with Wireless Charger
Normally, for a small desk setup, I would opt for a hook under the desk to hold a pair of headphones. In this case, the Satechi 2-in-1 headphone stand can hold multiple items, saving space. The stand includes a wireless charger so your phone or AirPods get a little extra power when you put them on the desk. The stand also features an additional USB-C port on the back, which can be used to charge the headphones it’s holding.
Buy from Satechi for $79.99.
Apple Magic Keyboard with Touch ID
If you decide to connect a monitor to a Mac laptop, you might accidentally get rid of one of its features: Touch ID. Modern Macs have a Touch ID button that allows you to unlock the computer and enter passwords by placing your fingerprint on the button. Apple sells a version of its wireless keyboard with Touch ID that works with any Apple silicon computer (M1 or later).
Buy from Amazon for $142.99.
Keychron K8 Pro
If you’d rather add a pop of color and clicking sound to your desk, the Keychron K8 Pro is a wireless mechanical keyboard that’s a solid place to start. The keyboard can be customized with various switches and keycaps, allowing you to tailor it to your personal aesthetic. What’s unique about the K8 Pro is that its keys can also be changed wirelessly using VIA software to make it work the way you want it to.
Shop at Keychron from $89.
ElevationLab’s Quickdraw is a way to get rid of a device cable on your desk. The mount sticks underneath, keeping a cable within reach to use whenever needed. You can add any cable type and length you want. The Quickdraw comes with 3M adhesive so you should be able to remove it easily.
Buy from ElevationLab for $12.95.
LuluEasy self-adhesive large drawer
If your desk doesn’t have drawers, you can easily add them. The self-adhesive LuluEasy large drawer is glued under a desk and can hold small items such as pens or extra cables. No screwing or drilling is required. This particular product comes with two drawers and while it can’t hold very large or heavy things, it will keep a lot of the small clutter out of sight.
Buy from Amazon for $18.99.
Kensington Studio Caddy
I reviewed the Kensington Studio Caddy earlier this year and its build quality is superb. It’s solid and feels durable. I wouldn’t worry it can hold any laptop that will fit in its slot. The Studio Caddy can hold a laptop, iPad, iPhone and AirPods at the same time.
It also has two charging ports on the side that can be used to temporarily charge a device like a wireless keyboard. I think this product works best as a docking station for people who connect their laptop to an external monitor in clamshell mode and also need a phone charger at their desk.
Buy from Amazon for $178.99.
Twelve South Curve risers
The Twelve South Curve Riser is an elegant way to upgrade your iMac or external monitor. The riser elevates your device 4.25″ off the desk and accommodates a 10″ monitor base. One of the things I like about this riser option is the thoughtfully placed shelf that it includes. The dimensions allow a Mac mini to slide in and almost disappear under a monitor. If you’re not using a Mac mini, the shelf can also hold audio interfaces or just the odds and ends you need from your desk.
Buy at Twelve South for $79.99.
Grovemade wooden iPad stand
My first instinct when shopping is to look for a low price or value for money. Grovemade Wood’s iPad stand doesn’t have either, but it does have quality and style. Grovemade products use real wood and include a very high level of attention to detail. The Wood iPad Stand is available in walnut or maple and looks classy in both types of wood.
There is no adjustment lever or plastic parts to break; It’s simply a stand in what the company says is the perfect viewing angle. It can hold any size iPad in both portrait and landscape orientation and has a hole for a charging cable on the back to keep it from slipping out when not in use.
Shop at Grovemade for $90.
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