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AlbertA

The Office equipment thread

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It's official, we are old and we are discussing office equipment :)

 

I just recently got an uplift desk (80"x30"). It's one of those motorized desks where I can stand if I need to. It's also nice when sitting, because I can fine-tune the height so I can have great ergonomics (90 degree angle on my legs when sitting, straight wrists, etc). It's very solid and so far it's been pretty awesome to go from sitting to standing and back with the touch of a button.

 

I also got a monitor arm from them (https://www.upliftdesk.com/range-single-monitor-arm-uplift-desk/) but it couldn't hold my monitor upright as it weighs 18lbs and forgot to check the weight limit (17.5lbs) so I returned it.

 

Instead, I got a VIVO monitor arm (https://www.amazon.com/VIVO-Premium-Aluminum-Heavy-Duty/dp/B07L8MLTGS) as it could hold up to 33lbs which my brother recommended as he just got one recently to hold his heavy iMac.

 

I also got a "Pursuit" ergonomic chair from uplift as well (https://www.upliftdesk.com/pursuit-ergonomic-chair-by-uplift-desk/) - I've only had it for a week, but so far so good. I could adjust almost everything  to my body; however I wish the seat was mesh like the previous Costco chair.  Also the armrest could do with some padding; Also I didn't like you couldn't move the armrest completely out of the way (I could do this with my previous chair) which is a bit annoying when trying to play guitar while sitting.

 

Lastly, last year, I got a daskeyboard 4 (https://www.daskeyboard.com/daskeyboard-4-professional/) and it's every bit as good as "they" said it would be. 

 

IMG_0805.thumb.jpg.0eacb6063f88c00bcd5757a185d03cfd.jpg

 

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How stable is the desk? I need a new desk and was looking at the Fully but I wanted one wider like what you have.

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Very stable. you can get it to wobble just a tiny bit in the standing position, but you have to go out of your way to do that (i.e. I had to grab the desk and shake it)

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I have the same desk frame (uplift) with an ikea countertop, it's very stable and as Al said you have to go out of your way to make it wobble. 

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I’m using an ikea kitchen counter top desk right now as well, I wish it was deeper so I had more room between me and my monitor. 

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Nice-I'm using a scrounged corner desk from our last office move, but it works quite well, and the price was right (free).  I'm also a huge fan of the dell thunderbolt dock that I got for my XPS15.  I needed to get the one with the 180w power supply, not 130-the 180 can actually deliver 130 to the laptop over usbC, which gives me power, 2 displays, ethernet, and a bunch of USB ports in one cable. 

 

The other thing that's important is A/V conferencing setup, and I have a couple of things I'm using for Teams calls these days.  My daily driver headset continues to be a Sennheiser SD Pro1 that I've had for several years now.  It's a mono DECT headset, and I like the fact that I can go anywhere in the house with it and stay connected.  I can actually go out to the street and get about three houses down the block before things start to break down, so if range is a preference, DECT is the way to go.  I also just got a Jabra Evolve2 85, which is a pretty amazing noise cancelling over ear headset.  I think it'll replace the Jabra Evolve 80 as the "cone of silence" headset, because the mic folds into the earpiece, and it's bluetooth and not USB.  Only con with it so far is that you can't use it wired if the battery is dead, but it just means making sure it's charged all the time.  I've also still got a couple of the hockey puck conference phones around, and the Sennheiser one is probably the best, although the Jabra Speak has bluetooth, which makes it slightly more useful for mobile, but then again, these are all a few years old, so I think newer models will have all the same features.  These things are surprisingly clear in small rooms, so if you want to be able to take calls in a home office without a headset, they're worth trying out. 

 

Only other thing I'd like to optimize in here a little better is the keyboard/mouse.  I have a logitech Performance MX mouse and K800 keyboard that use the unifying receiver.  I have both a laptop and desktop in the office (usually only one in use at a time), and the only way to really swap the same keyboard/mouse between them is to unplug the dongle from one machine, and connect to the other.  There's no way that I know of to connect the mouse and keyboard to multiple receivers (I have a spare one), and I can't think of a way to connect the receiver to both machines at once (USB splitter?).  I could use a software solution or even a physical KVM, but for now the best I can come up with is moving the receiver.  Not that much of a pain I suppose, but I just have to remember to do it once I'm done for the day, because otherwise the kids will complain that the computer doesn't work :)

 

 

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1 hour ago, ChrisBardon said:

Only other thing I'd like to optimize in here a little better is the keyboard/mouse.  I have a logitech Performance MX mouse and K800 keyboard that use the unifying receiver.  I have both a laptop and desktop in the office (usually only one in use at a time), and the only way to really swap the same keyboard/mouse between them is to unplug the dongle from one machine, and connect to the other.  There's no way that I know of to connect the mouse and keyboard to multiple receivers (I have a spare one), and I can't think of a way to connect the receiver to both machines at once (USB splitter?).  I could use a software solution or even a physical KVM, but for now the best I can come up with is moving the receiver.  Not that much of a pain I suppose, but I just have to remember to do it once I'm done for the day, because otherwise the kids will complain that the computer doesn't work :)

 

 

 

This is why I like the Dell U3419w - it has a built in KVM (really a USB switch).

It has 3 USB outputs (usb-c, and two USB3 Type B ports) which you can assign to any of its display output ports so that when you change between them, it switches the USB output port at the same time.

I have my personal Desktop connected through DisplayPort and a USB3 cable from the monitor to the PC (cables came with the monitor).

Then I have a single usb-c cable (which also came with the monitor) from the monitor to the Macbook Pro (where I actually do work), which powers it up, serves as the display output and connects the monitor usb hub all-in-one.

I have my keyboard and wireless mouse connected to the monitor. The Daskeyboard 4 has a couple of USB ports built in as well, which I use to plug my Yubi key - very convenient as I log in into the corporate VPN. 

So with the touch of a button (in the monitor) I can switch between my PC and the  laptop and still use the same keyboard and mouse.

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51 minutes ago, Camp said:

 

I have this too. Big fan. I like that the media features are tastefully done.

Indeed, simple and elegant. 

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I already have a decent desk, but I do want to do sit/stand.  

 

I decided that the one external monitor/laptop on a stand combo is good enough for me. 

 

Today I ordered this chair:   https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00BXKFMLS/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Seemed like the best in my price-range.

I also got this sit/stand adjuster:   https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07BRK95Z5/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

 

Everything should arrive on Wednesday, so I'll post my thoughts after a full day's use on Thursday.

 

 

Carlos.

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That motorized Uplift desk looks a lot like the one I have at work, which of course I haven't actually used in months now. It's really kind of wasted on me because I never sit, I'm 100% standing. Which reminds me, if you plan to stand for extended periods get yourself a pad to stand on! It's not just a nice thing to have, it's an ergonomic necessity.

 

I really lucked out when I got my desk at Ikea in 2007, when I moved to the East Bay. I say I 'lucked out' because a few years later they discontinued it, but improbably, an online fan-club developed, including a site devoted to hacking the design with DIY shelves, etc. I'm a bit wary of Ikea in general, because some of it is really shitty quality.  But the desk I found seemed to be the exception. At that point standing wasn't even on my radar, I just liked the modular construction of the desk, and how they had an 'ecosystem' of sorts built around it, with extra shelving and these swiveling "satellite" shelves. It's a ingenious design that allows almost any part to be attached at almost any level. I found a pic online that gives a sense of how it works (the main frame is steel and super solid):

ikea-jerker-261463.jpg&f=1&nofb=1

 

I have everything this pic, plus a second horizontal shelf. The swivel shelves can be mounted inside or outside the main frame. Right now I have one installed near the floor on the inside of the frame which holds my Drobo and other external HDs. The only downside to this desk is that in order to change anything, it has to be unbolted from the frame and rebolted.


This past winter I decided to change my studio setup (I think I outlined this in the music production thread). I really needed to be standing, which I've been doing at work for a few years. After playing with different configurations, I arrived at a setup that works perfectly for me. All for an initial investment of ~$150.

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2 hours ago, Carlucci said:

 

That's almost identical to the setup I had at my previous job. The risers work well, great for converting a desk to sit/stand. The one I had was a little 'shaky' when fully extended with multiple monitors (ie extra weight). Not shaky as in "it's going to fall," but just prone to carrying vibrations through the structure, especially laterally. The other issue I had, back when I raised and lowered it daily, is that I had to be careful of cable extensions, making sure cables, or anything else, don't get caught in the mechanism. That includes putting things within the footprint of the upper platform while it's raised that will be in the way when it's not.

 

(EDIT: I went to close that tab, and noticed that the mechanism is not the same as the one I had. That one scissors up, the one I had used a kind of flat scissor mechanism on each side...when it was up, the space underneath was open. So the one you got may be more stable)

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Well I just bought an Uplift Frame that I will put under my Ikea kitchen counter top desk. I love this desktop but it sits way too low for me. Thanks for the recommendations guys. I'll post pics when it's all set up. In terms of chairs, I have had a Herman Miller Aeron for several years, it's been great. I'd like to move to a Herman Miller Embody chair eventually as it has superior back support.

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I have the Embody, I like it so far, though I should probably stop sitting in all these strange positions.

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13 minutes ago, NickC said:

I have the Embody, I like it so far, though I should probably stop sitting in all these strange positions.

I told myself after drop some more weight I will reward myself with the Embody. I slouch so much because my desk is too low so I hope the sit/stand will help me out there.

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19 hours ago, rustyjaw said:

 

That's almost identical to the setup I had at my previous job. The risers work well, great for converting a desk to sit/stand. The one I had was a little 'shaky' when fully extended with multiple monitors (ie extra weight). Not shaky as in "it's going to fall," but just prone to carrying vibrations through the structure, especially laterally.

 

It's funny you mention that.  In my second-to-last workstation cubicle, everyone told me "You're going to hate this workstation.  It shakes."  Sure enough, for some reason, the vibrations from the elevators caused my monitors to shake, despite the elevators being more than 30 feet away.  It had nothing to do with the monitor arms.  They were tight and steady.  It had everything to do with some sort of resonance wave finding my spot as its epicenter. Cubes around me weren't affected.  That's pretty spooky considering we were on floor 27 out of 50 of a large downtown office building.

 

Silver lining:  As I mentioned elsewhere we had just moved to the 36th floor, where there was no such shaking.  But it was an open floor plan.  So now, we'll probably be the last to be approved to return to work, as we don't have walls between employees. 

 

 

Carlos.

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15 hours ago, NickC said:

I have the Embody, I like it so far, though I should probably stop sitting in all these strange positions.

 

That's a really nice chair! I'm jealous.

 

I have an older model of the fairly ubiquitous Steelcase Leap chair. These can be found online for significantly less than suggested pricing.

 

I have a love/hate relationship with my (also older) Ikea desk. It's of similar metal-frame construction as the pic Ed posted above but without the vertical bits. I love the amount of surface area (roughly 5' wide by 3' deep) as it gives me room for speakers, 2 monitors, keyboard, laptop with stand & external keyboard, and I still have writing space for notes. The hate side comes from the imperfect height for typing.

 

Our office is filled with Varidesk motorized units. I'm curious if Varidesk is comparable to Uplift? I love the desks at work for their smooth and reliable mechanism and memory settings. On the other hand, and his may be a bit odd, but I have a really gross reaction to the semi-textured surface of the desktop. It's a subtle texture but if I touch my palm to it or rest my hand while typing, I experience a very negative physical reaction...so that I could do without.

 

One semi-related purchase I just made was for a pair of bluetooth in-ear headphones specifically for online meetings. I had been wrestling with PC speakers (overkill) + webcam mic or using an old (and dorky looking) pair of gaming headphones. I picked up the Jabra Elite Active 75t and they've exceeded my expectations. They are perfect for Google Meet connecting to my desktop PC, android phone, or my work Mac. They are completely waterproof too so they have become my Peloton workout headphones. The freedom these bring has been pretty cool outside of the home office too. Over the weekend, I BBQ'd while my wife worked and daughter played Switch. Moving from the kitchen to the patio grill while listening to podcasts and  music without bothering anyone was pretty cool.

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20 hours ago, rustyjaw said:

That motorized Uplift desk looks a lot like the one I have at work, which of course I haven't actually used in months now. It's really kind of wasted on me because I never sit, I'm 100% standing. Which reminds me, if you plan to stand for extended periods get yourself a pad to stand on! It's not just a nice thing to have, it's an ergonomic necessity.

 

I really lucked out when I got my desk at Ikea in 2007, when I moved to the East Bay. I say I 'lucked out' because a few years later they discontinued it, but improbably, an online fan-club developed, including a site devoted to hacking the design with DIY shelves, etc. I'm a bit wary of Ikea in general, because some of it is really shitty quality.  But the desk I found seemed to be the exception. At that point standing wasn't even on my radar, I just liked the modular construction of the desk, and how they had an 'ecosystem' of sorts built around it, with extra shelving and these swiveling "satellite" shelves. It's a ingenious design that allows almost any part to be attached at almost any level. I found a pic online that gives a sense of how it works (the main frame is steel and super solid):

ikea-jerker-261463.jpg&f=1&nofb=1

 

I have everything this pic, plus a second horizontal shelf. The swivel shelves can be mounted inside or outside the main frame. Right now I have one installed near the floor on the inside of the frame which holds my Drobo and other external HDs. The only downside to this desk is that in order to change anything, it has to be unbolted from the frame and rebolted.


This past winter I decided to change my studio setup (I think I outlined this in the music production thread). I really needed to be standing, which I've been doing at work for a few years. After playing with different configurations, I arrived at a setup that works perfectly for me. All for an initial investment of ~$150.

 

I've got the exact same desk that I bought around the same time. Only difference is mine has a dark top instead of the light wood. I love it and it's still super solid after ~15 years and several moves!

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1 hour ago, jubjub75 said:

 

I've got the exact same desk that I bought around the same time. Only difference is mine has a dark top instead of the light wood. I love it and it's still super solid after ~15 years and several moves!

 

Nice! Have you ever taken a look at Ebay to see what parts for these go for now? It's totally ridiculous. People asking $250 for the swivel shelves!

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25 minutes ago, rustyjaw said:

 

Nice! Have you ever taken a look at Ebay to see what parts for these go for now? It's totally ridiculous. People asking $250 for the swivel shelves!

 

Interesting...I think I still have one that I'm not using...the question will be if I can find it :)

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Camp, Varidesk is a fine vendor as well. That’s who we used at my previous employer as well. You can get them with real wood desktops that are smooth. The Jabra 75t is a nice pair of headphones.
 

My desk parts won’t ship until June 30th.

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Well half my desk legs showed up randomly today. It says Box 1 of 2. Hopefully FedEx brings box 2 of 2 around tomorrow. 

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On 6/2/2020 at 9:19 AM, Carlucci said:

  So now, we'll probably be the last to be approved to return to work, as we don't have walls between employees.  

 

Yep same issue by us. The rooms for our department are not regular cubicles. Rumor was we would do some sort of extra day in office schedule starting the week of the 15th, but as of yesterday no plans to change anything.  The bigger part of the office will probably return to normal sooner then we will.

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