As I discussed in the video of my home office I spent many years working at my old Costco desk that has served just fine for a couple of hours of work here and there. However, with COVID-19 driving people home to work remotely, a standing desk has become my platform of choice and my Costco desk is now used for storing mobile gear I am reviewing.
A representative from FlexiSpot reached out to see if I was interested in testing an electric standing desk. I was sent a bamboo desktop with the EN1 standing desk frame to evaluate. You can purchase desk series that includes the frame, desktop, and keypad or you can purchase frames and desktops separately.
A few key features I look for in electric standing desks are programmable height settings for quick transition between sitting and standing, quiet motors, tall enough to satisfy my 6 foot, 1 inch, height, and a stable platform at the standing height. The FlexiSpot solution satisfied all of these features and even provided a convenient additional one I haven't seen before.
The desk arrived in two separate boxes a couple of days apart. The EN1 frame, including the legs, feet, and controller, was in one box and the desktop was contained in another box. The EN1 frame box was quite heavy as the legs and motor are pretty dense, helping to make the desk quite stable at the full height.
The legs and top were well protected in the boxes and were in perfect condition. The box with the legs includes the directions, bolts, screws, allen wrenches needed to install the bolts, measuring tape, and a basic wrench to tighten the drive shaft. You will need a Phillips screwdriver or even better, an electric drill to drive in the wood screws to secure the frame to the bottom of the desk.
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The directions were easy to follow, but properly tightening the crossbeam at the right length was a bit confusing. I read through all of the directions and then figured I would temporarily tighten the crossbeam at a certain length and then come back to adjust it after I placed it on the bottom of the desktop. The crossbeam length is dependent on the transmission rod placement and the desktop length. Step 5 of the directions states that the distance from the edge of the desktop to the frame should be less than 7.9 inches. I selected 7 inches as my length and made sure the frame was the same on both sides.
Interestingly, there are no holes in the desktop for placement and alignment of the frame so you will also need a measuring tape to center the frame on the bottom of the desktop and make sure you are within the guidance 7.9 inches at each end of the desktop. There were holes for aligning the standard digital keypad with wood screws also used to secure this to the desktop. I installed the desk in a room with carpet, but the feet also have levelers on the bottom in case you need to level the desk.
Cable ties with tape were also provided so you can secure the keypad, motor, and power cables under the desktop securely. The cables were easy to route and plug in for proper use with the desk.
Design and setup
There are many options when it comes to electric standing desks and the FlexiSpot one I tested is one of the most affordable. The bamboo desktop is priced at $180 for the 55-inch by 28-inch rectangle top I tested. You can also select a curved top, as well as size options of 48x24 ($150) and 60x30 ($290) inches.
The EN1 standing desk frame, with a digital display keypad, is priced at $229.99. The frame is available in black, gray, and white. The frame is designed for a capacity of 154 pounds. FlexiSpot has other frame options that have dual motors and higher weight capacity.
After connecting everything together, plug in the desk to activate it. There are three programmable memory settings, up/down arrows with a LED display showing the current height in green, a memory save button, and a reminder settings button. Height settings are available from 28 inches to 47.6 inches, not including the desktop thickness. My preferred sitting height is 30.5 inches and my preferred standing height is 45.1 inches. Switching between these two only takes several seconds and the movement is quiet too.
The reminder option is a handy feature where you can program a period of time between 0 and 99 minutes to have a buzzer sound for 10 seconds to remind you to stand. If you press any button within that 10 second period then the timer will start over. If you do not press any button in that 10 seconds, then another buzzer will activate after five minutes. If you again do not press a button then the reminder function will turn off. You can simply press the A button to reenable the timer.
The bamboo desktop looks and feels great with a solid surface. It's a naturally sourced material made from 100% bamboo so you can trust you have an eco-friendly desktop surface.
The EN1 frame is very solid and heavy-duty. Even at the full height, the desk is stable when loaded with computers and other gear. The directions are comprehensive, except for the alignment of the crossbeam and fit to center the frame under the desktop.
The price is excellent for an electric standing desk with the quality of construction and all of the included features.
Even if there aren't measurable health benefits of standing over sitting, simply changing my perspective throughout the day has made me more productive. In addition, I find when I transition from sitting to standing it prompts me to leave the office and walk around my house so more activity is being initiated through regular sessions of standing.
It's great to shift to a standing position and look out my room window to see some of the world around me as I work. Spending several hours a day on Microsoft Teams meetings can be a defeating lifestyle, but standing desks switch up your perspective a bit and get you shifting your weight around as you make the transition up and down.