Standing desk beside bed in room

The Best Standing Desks of 2021

By Austin Meadows DesksNo Comments

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Many of us spend the majority of our days sitting at a desk, poring over spreadsheets or responding to emails. Fortunately, the recent rise of the standing desk has given us an alternative to all-day sitting. 

A sedentary lifestyle is the norm now, but it’s certainly not what our bodies are designed to do. Some experts have gone so far as to declare that “sitting is the new smoking,” a reference to the potentially harmful effects of excessive sitting. This phrase is certainly a bit dramatic, but it may hold some truth. 

Research has shown that there are substantial benefits to increased activity levels, even if it’s something as simple as standing up for part of the day. The best way to do this is to use a standing desk, or a sit/stand desk, during your working hours. 

When shopping for a standing desk, the main factors to keep in mind are cost, adjustability, height range, style, and physical size. 

The type of standing desk is also important. Static standing desks can only be used while standing, while the majority of standing desks are adjustable and can be used while both sitting or standing. We recommend a sit/stand desk in most cases, as they are far more versatile than static options. 

There are dozens of quality standing desk options available, which can make choosing the right model an intimidating process. That’s why we’ve spent plenty of time tracking down the best standing desks on the market today, from budget-friendly converters to beautiful hardwood models. Whatever style you’re after, these are the best standing desks of 2021. 

Best Standing Desk: UPLIFT V2
  • Width: 42-80 inches
  • Type: Sit/stand
  • Adjustment method: Electric motor with presets
  • Maximum weight: 355 lbs

Best Sit/Stand Desk: Fully Jarvis
  • Width: 48-72 inches
  • Type: Sit/stand
  • Adjustment method: Electric motor with presets
  • Maximum weight: 350 lbs

Best Standing Desk Converter: FLEXISPOT Stand Up Desk Converter
  • Width: 28-42 inches
  • Type: Desk converter
  • Adjustment method: Manual
  • Maximum weight: 33 lbs

Sale
Best Affordable Standing Desk: SHW Electric Height Adjustable Computer Desk
  • Width: 40-48 inches
  • Type: Sit/stand
  • Adjustment method: Electric motor with presets
  • Maximum weight: unspecified

Best Standing Desk for a Home Office: ApexDesk Elite
  • Width: 60-71 inches
  • Type: Sit/stand
  • Adjustment method: Electric motor with presets
  • Maximum weight: 225 lbs

Sale
Best Small Standing Desk: SIDUCAL Mobile Stand Up Desk
  • Width: 22 inches
  • Type: Standing
  • Adjustment method: Manual
  • Maximum weight: unspecified

Best Standing Desk: UPLIFT V2

UPLIFT Desk - V2 Bamboo Desktop Standing Desk, Height Adjustable Frame (Industrial), Adv. Memory Keypad & Wire Grommets (Black), Bamboo Motion-X Board (42' x 30')

UPLIFT Desk is a popular standing desk manufacturer based in Austin, Texas. The UPLIFT V2 is the company’s flagship product, and our pick for the best standing desk overall. 

The V2 combines style and functionality to create a beautiful, versatile desk. It can hold up to 355lbs of weight and offers a very wide range of heights, comfortably accommodating people from around five feet tall all the way up to 6′ 9″. For workers on the shorter side, the V2 is a great option, as it can be lowered about three inches more than most competing desks. 

The UPLIFT V2 is an adjustable sit/stand desk, with a powerful electric motor that can quickly change the table height. Memory presets make it simple to adjust to your favorite position. The desk has minimal wobble, but for even more stability, customers can opt for the V2-Commercial model which includes a crossbar for extra support. 

Another huge selling point of this desk is its customization options. Over a dozen design and color options are available, making it easy to match the style of your work area.

Many optional accessories, such as monitor arms, keyboard trays, drawers and more can expand the desk’s functionality. The coolest accessory has to be the under-desk hammock, which allows workers to catch a quick break by relaxing under their desk.

There’s a lot to love about this desk. The only real downside is its price, which is above average. You get what you pay for, though, and for those with the budget for it, the UPLIFT V2 is the best standing desk on the market. 

Pros
  • Sturdy, stable design
  • Wide height range
  • 15+ design/color options
  • Unique add-on accessories like an under-desk hammock (!)
  • Highly customizable
Cons
  • Above-average price
Buy on Amazon

Best Sit/Stand Desk: Fully Jarvis

Fully Jarvis Standing Desk 48' x 30' Bamboo Top - Electric Adjustable Desk Height from 30' to 49.3' with Memory Preset Controller (Rectangle, Black Frame)

Fully is a Portland, Oregon based company that designs a wide range of ergonomic office furniture and equipment. The Fully Jarvis is its flagship model, and one of our personal favorites for a sit/stand desk option. 

The Jarvis is a large office desk that’s available in three widths: 48″, 60″, and 72″. The 48″ model presents a good option for smaller home offices, while the larger versions offer substantially more workspace for those who need it. 

The desk can support up to 350lbs, making it a versatile choice for nearly any office. It’s fully adjustable, with a simple memory preset for fast adjustments. The Jarvis is also backed by a 7-year limited warranty. 

The Jarvis has an optional contoured design available. Instead of the traditional rectangle, the front-facing side of the desk is curved slightly, allowing the user to stand a bit closer to the keyboard and monitor. On this contoured version, the edge of the desk is also gently sloped, which helps improve comfort for the wrists. 

Design-wise, the Jarvis is simple yet beautiful, with a natural bamboo top. While stylish, we did find that the bamboo top is somewhat soft, and may scratch easily. The Jarvis is also priced a bit higher than average for standing desks, but in our opinion, the quality craftsmanship makes it well worth the price. 

Pros
  • Stylish bamboo design
  • Fully adjustable with memory presets
  • Optional contoured desktop design
  • Choice of three size options
  • Supports up to 350 lb
  • Seven year warranty
Cons
  • Above average price
  • Bamboo top is soft and easily scratched
Buy on Amazon

Best Standing Desk Converter: FLEXISPOT Stand Up Desk Converter

FLEXISPOT Standing Desk Converter 28 Inches Stand up Desk Riser, Height Adjustable Home Office Desk with Deep Keyboard Tray for Laptop (M7B)

If you have an existing desk that you’d like to turn into a standing version, the FLEXISPOT Stand Up Desk Converter is a good option. It’s made by FLEXISPOT, a maker of ergonomic office equipment. 

This product is designed to sit on top of a desk or table, converting it into a sit/stand desk. It’s a much more affordable option than buying a separate standing desk, although it doesn’t offer quite the same functionality. 

The FLEXISPOT uses a hydraulic system to adjust the height, which you’ll need to do manually: there’s no electric motor. There are no presets either, so it may take some trial and error to get the positioning right. 

The two-tier approach of this accessory is also unusual. Designed for a keyboard, mouse, and monitor to sit comfortably, the tiered design is necessary, but can also cause the desk to feel somewhat cramped. For people who have large computer accessories or a number of things on their desks, the FLEXISPOT may feel too small. 

Despite its drawbacks, the FLEXISPOT is an excellent choice for those looking for an affordable, simple way to convert an existing desk into a sit/stand desk. It’s a great way of testing out whether stand-up working is for you without dropping hundreds of dollars straight away.

Pros
  • Sits on your existing desk
  • Very affordable
  • Two-tier design with keyboard tray
  • Stable design
Cons
  • Manual adjustment (not electric)
  • Can feel cramped
Buy on Amazon

Best Affordable Standing Desk: SHW Electric Height Adjustable Computer Desk

SHW Memory Preset Electric Height Adjustable Standing Desk, 48 x 24 Inches, Black

The SHW Electric Height Adjustable Computer Desk is a good middle ground between high-end models like the UPLIFT Desk and budget converters like the FLEXISPOT. Essentially, this model aims to offer similar functionality to high-end standing desks at a fraction of the price. 

You won’t find stunning hardwood designs or high-speed motors on this model, but you will find a solid, functional standing desk. It does have an electric motor, along with four memory presets, so is easy to adjust. It’s also quite a bit lighter than competing models, which makes it easier to set up and move. Lastly, it offers impressive stability for such an affordable desk. 

Of course, a model this affordable must have some downsides. The biggest drawback to consider is that the quality of the materials and craftsmanship are simply not as high as you will find on higher-end models. 

For example, the motor is slower and noisier than most, and may slow down over time. The weight capacity is just 110 lbs, which is around 1/3rd of competing models like the Jarvis. In general, the cheaper components are more likely to cause issues in the future, compared to our top recommended desks. 

The desktop is also two sections, rather than one solid piece. This results in a small crease on the surface. This shouldn’t cause an issue for computer-based work, but could be a problem when using the desk for drawing, drafting, etc. 

Despite the drawbacks, it’s hard to ignore the sharp pricing of this desk, and you still get plenty for your money. If you’re looking for a budget standing desk, this is a great option. 

Pros
  • Sturdy, with minimal wobble
  • Simple assembly
  • Relatively lightweight
  • Memory presets for easy adjustments
  • Budget-friendly price
Cons
  • Two-piece desktop has a small crease
  • Motor may slow down over time
  • Low weight capacity
Buy on Amazon

Best Standing Desk for a Home Office: ApexDesk Elite

ApexDesk AX7133GRY Elite Series Electric Height Adjustable Standing Desk (71', Grey Top/Black Frame)

The ApexDesk Elite is another high-end standing desk with quality craftsmanship and thousands of happy customers. In many ways, it’s similar to the Fully Jarvis mentioned above, even including the optional curved design.

The main difference is the material: the Jarvis has a bamboo hardwood top, while the ApexDesk Elite uses a medium-density fiberboard. A good fit for sophisticated home offices, it offers above-average depth of 33 inches, and a width of either 60 or 71 inches. This desk can easily accommodate all the gear you need, including multiple monitors.

It supports up to 220 lbs, which is less than the Fully or Uplift models, but still plenty for most purposes. The electric motor is efficient, quiet, and includes four memory presets. It’s simple to adjust, although the motor is a bit slower than some. 

The main downside of this model is that there is no cross-beam in the center. For such a large desk, this can result in less stability, potentially causing more wobble on the desktop towards the top end of the height range. We would like to see the option to add a cross-beam, like UPLIFT offers with the V2-Commercial. 

Nonetheless, we appreciate the extra depth and width of this model. It’s a great fit for larger home offices, and particularly for anyone who uses multiple monitors.

Pros
  • Up to 71″ wide
  • Above-average depth (33 inches)
  • Accommodates multiple monitors and gear
  • Supports up to 220 lb (100 kg)
  • Adjustable with four memory presets
Cons
  • Lack of center beam results in a slightly less stable design
  • Lifting speed can be a little slow
Buy on Amazon

Best Small Standing Desk: SIDUCAL Mobile Stand Up Desk

SIDUCAL Mobile Stand Up Desk, Adjustable Laptop Desk with Wheels Home Office Workstation, Rolling Desk Laptop Cart for Standing or Sitting, Black

Many of the standing desks on this list are beautiful and highly functional, but also quite large. For apartment dwellers, the significant size of these desks is often simply just too much to justify.

The SIDUCAL Mobile Stand Up Desk is different, with a compact, mobile design. The footprint is just 21.65″ by 21.65″, which will fit in even the smallest of spaces. 

The SIDUCAL desk has a split-top design, meaning it can be used either as a flat desktop or a two-tier workstation. The front half can even pivot slightly to provide a slanted work surface, perfect for drawing or taking notes. For computer work, the small size and lightweight materials make it more appropriate for a laptop than a full-size desktop and monitor setup.  

This is a simple, affordable desk with manual adjustments (no electric motor) and a minimalist design. It can be a bit of a pain to adjust, so for many, it will function best as a dedicated standing desk, rather than a sit/stand desk. It is also on wheels, which while convenient, contributes to a somewhat wobbly feel. 

Pros
  • Small and lightweight
  • Easily movable
  • Two-tier design
  • A sit/stand desk on a budget
  • Lower tier top can tilt for artwork/writing
Cons
  • Wheeled design contributes to wobble
  • Lightweight materials limit the maximum weight it can hold
  • Slow to adjust
Buy on Amazon

Main image via Cameron Venti, product images via Amazon

About the Author
Austin Meadows

Austin Meadows

Austin is a digital nomad with a passion for exploring alternative lifestyles and testing the latest technological innovations. Rarely under the same roof for long, when he's not sampling wine and cheese in Bulgaria or downloading the latest travel app, you can find him running, gaming, or cooking up something delicious.

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