Workspace Upgrade

With COVID-19 and associated work from home requirements from my current company, I decided to revamp my old workspace at home with a standing desk and take some pictures along the way as I set it back up.  My goal with this workspace revamp was:

  1. use the two 27″ monitors I currently have
  2. switch between my personal computer and the work laptop while using these monitors
  3. minimize cabling mess that currently exists at the back of the existing monitors
  4. easily switch back to just using my personal computer once work from home requirements are over

Here was the initial desk setup.  The work laptop (right) is connected to a 24″ monitor (right) provided for by my work.  You don’t really see the massive amounts of cables behind the desks but you can sort of get an idea of how crowded my workspace has become.

Desk (0)

So my employer has been kind enough to provide all employees with a “Work From Home Allowance” due to COVID-19.  Google has provided similar allowances with their workers.  With this allowance, I had opted to buy a new chair and then when WFH was extended to spend the remaining amount on a standing desk.

Doing research on standing desks, there are quite a few companies that provide standing desks: Uplift Desk, Autonomous, Jarvis by Fully, Vari, and other brands sold through Amazon and Office Depot.  After research of the cost and options of what is offered, I settled on a more expensive Uplift Desk because it had the colors and options that I was interested in.  So here’s are the pics with some description

I opted for the a Dark Rubberwood 72″x30″ desk with two power grommets, a programmable memory keypad, wire management package, a CPU holder and dual monitor arms.  Let me just say that, knowing what I know now, the power grommet, wire management, CPU holder and dual monitor arms can be purchased more cheaply with better options from Amazon.  Wire management can also be done easily with small accessories also purchased from Amazon and Home Depot.  After setting up the desk, I’ve been slowly upgrading and buying the items I need to achieve the 4 goals listed above.

Power Grommets.  Unless ordering the largest size, pre-drilled wire grommets come standard with the desk.  Knowing that I needed power, I opted for dual power grommets.  But looking through Amazon and Home Depot afterwards, I realized that I could have gotten other grommets for cheaper that offered more options.  Options include things like USB hubs and embedded USB ports for charging.  I realized that reading the comments as well as the seeing the total number of reviews is pretty important.  Because of the “openness” of Amazon being able to sell anything, there are a lot of merchants that sell the same looking merchandise at various price points.  Sometimes I think they are the same but it just gets branded differently.  I ended up getting two of the USB 2 ports for charging with a max of 4A if only 1 port is used.  They also have a 4 port, 2A (4A max) option.  To be clear, I have no idea what grommet is good.  With so many similar looking options, I ended up choosing one that had a lot of reviews which ended up being this Amazon store: Jgstkcity.  I tried searching to see if they had their own website but found only links to Amazon and other websites selling their equipment.  To be fair, I also tried other grommets like the USB hub linked above.  Unfortunately the design of the grommet didn’t allow for easy assembly/insertion into the pre-drilled hole.  And unplugging USB cords from the hub lifted it out of the grommet.  So as much as I wanted the hub to work, it didn’t perform well and honestly requires a simple design change to make it work.

Wire Management. The included wire management package I bought comes with reusable zip ties, adjustable cable strap clamps, cable clips, power strips, and cable management tray.  Although it might be cheaper to use the items provided by the package, I ended up going out to Home Depot and Amazon to buy more of these items since I ended up having to redo cabling multiple times.  And since I’m about 75% completed, there’s more cabling management needed in the future.

Dual Monitor Arms.  Simply put… Amazon has cheaper alternatives like this Vivo Dual Monitor Desk Stand.

CPU Holder. Next steps will be to build a new ITX computer.  Why? My current computer is ~4 years old. But more importantly, it doesn’t fit into the CPU holder.  The width of the case is slightly too big for the holder by approximately an inch.  If I had measured more carefully, I would never have ordered the CPU holder since I have other options to place the current computer.  But since I installed the CPU holder, I might as well push accelerate the timing of my computer purchase.  Once I build this computer, the remaining cables seen in the last picture can be cleaned up since the length of the cables will be effectively fixed mounted in the CPU holder.

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