Friday, January 31, 2020

Enjoying Increased Productivity with a Standing Desk Converter



Standing desks. You've heard about them, heck you probably have seen a few if you work in an office environment. For a long time they have always seemed like a novel idea, but either way too expensive or way too difficult to setup to be ideal for a home office. I thought the same thing, and as a result, largely ignored them while secretly wanting to try them out one day. Recently, I was given the chance to test out the ErgoSpring Standing Desk Converter - Extra Wide from AnthroDesk. I used the device for about 2 weeks for both work and gaming and I'm here to report on my findings. So, without further adieu, my review of the AnthroDesk: ErgoSpring Standing Desk Converter - Extra Wide.

I bought this standing desk converter off of Amazon and received it within about 2 days from UPS. Taking the device out of the box was incredibly easy as it was well packaged and really only had two big pieces. The large part was the desk itself. It arrived flat and just needed to have the keyboard layer added with a couple screws. A screwdriver was provided and honestly, the keyboard extender was setup in about 5 minutes. You have to cut some zip ties to allow the desk to raise/lower and then you're set. Total time from box to desk - 15 minutes, but only because I was being extra careful to make sure I got everything right. Could have easily been closer to 10.

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After getting everything setup, you can then put your monitor and keyboard on the device. Image 1 above shows what mine looked like after getting everything setup. The keyboard is still low enough to use from a seated perspective and you gain the benefit of having the monitor elevated a bit, something I didn't realize before, but is actually much nicer than what I had (a level monitor.) There is more than ample room off to the sides to sit a drink on and I was even able to fit my speakers and desk lamp on the main body.

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Looking at Image 3 and 4 above, you can see that the desk looks like fully raised. There are two handles on the sides (seen in image 4) that you put your hands into and gently press with your right hand while lifting. It's incredibly easy and doesn't require much force at all. You can set it to whatever height you like as the device is gas powered and will stop and hold wherever you leave it. Overall, the raising/lowering is incredibly easy and can be done by anyone. You just need to be careful you don't do it too fast and get a cord stuck on something behind your desk and pull it off the converter. 

So, after 2 weeks using it, how do I like it? I love it. I honestly didn't think I would like it as much as I do. For starters, all meetings I have remote are now done with the desk in a standing position. I find it keeps me more alert and I'm able to follow along with what is being discussed much easier while standing than I would while sitting. I purchased an anti-fatigue mat for 20 bucks off Amazon as well and use that to help alleviate any leg pain that might have arisen for standing for extended periods. Typically, I'll start my day standing and use it that way for about an hour, maybe 90 minutes. If I start to get tired or just want to relax, I'll lower it to the seated position and do that for about 30 minutes, rinse and repeat. I've found that I actually use the desk in a standing position much more than I do in the seated when it comes to work. 

For gaming and general computer use while not working, my findings were about the same. I'm an avid World of Warcraft player and one of the things I love to do is dungeons and raids. This involves playing competitively for extended periods of time and most of the events take place with my guild late at night. Sitting can cause you to lose focus or drift off if you're getting tired, but with a standing desk, I'm much more alert and able to stay focused for longer periods of time. I knew I would like the standing desk while working from home, but I was pleasantly surprised to see how much I enjoy it while gaming.

Another benefit of the standing desk I've found - I have much less sciatica pain from sitting. I have a herniated disc in my back from years ago and a couple times a year I'll have flare ups. Standing seems to help with that, so I'm hopeful that I'll have less occurrences of the pain in the future. 

If you were on the fence about getting a standing desk because of price or complications with setup, rest assured it's both affordable and easy to setup. The AnthroDesk: ErgoSpring Standing Desk Converter - Extra Wide retails for $179.99 on AnthroDesk.com but Amazon tends to have sales from time to time. After spending two weeks with the standing desk converter, I can tell you with 100% certainty, I'm not going back to simply sitting all the time. Now I just need to convince my boss to get me one for my desk at work!


Disclaimer: I was given this product for free to review, but all thoughts and opinions in this review are my own.

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