Frustrated by the tangle of wires and gear taking over every last inch of your desk? A few basic accessories can go a long way toward restoring some order and increasing your productivity.
These nine options are sure to improve desks big and small, whether you have just a laptop and a few peripherals or a more elaborate home office setup.
A laptop stand is a great addition to your desk if you’re regularly using it with a separate keyboard and mouse, but some laptop stands can improve your workspace more than others. This one from AmazonBasics not only offers a range of height settings to position your laptop just right, but it also includes a cable organizer at the rear to keep things as tidy.
A big external monitor can be a great way to increase your productivity, and it’s a must for some tasks, but they can also take up an awful lot of desk real estate. This stand from Monoprice can raise your monitor to a better viewing height if it doesn’t have its own height adjustments, and it frees up space under your monitor. Use it to store papers or other items, or simply as a place to tuck your keyboard and mouse when you’re not working.
You don’t have to ditch your existing desk to enjoy some of the benefits of a standing desk. There’s a number of great conversion options that are considerably more functional and less of an eyesore than the stack of boxes you might be using.
The Wirecutter singles out Ergo Desktop’s kangaroo Pro Junior model as its top pick because of its easy adjustments and small footprint. If you’re standing for a long time, an anti-fatigue mat is another great idea.
Chances are, one of the main causes of clutter in your workspace are all the wires and cables running from one device to another. There are plenty of ways to help keep them neat and tidy, but the J Channel Cable Raceway is one particularly well-reviewed option among Amazon customers.
Just attach one (or more) of them to your desk or wall with the self-adhesive back, and then run all of your cables through them. Pair it with a few cable clips ($9) on your desk to keep important cables close at hand.
A simple stand is one option to free up some desk space under your monitor but, depending on your workspace, a monitor arm may be best. This well-reviewed AmazonBasics arm can attach to almost any desk or table and support monitors up to 32-inches. Once setup, you can then move, tilt, or rotate your monitor in any position you like.
If you don’t need to use your laptop’s screen when paired with an external monitor, a vertical stand like Twelve South’s BookArc is a great way to free up desk space. It’s designed to securely hold any type of recent MacBook (although similar-sized Windows laptops will also fit), and is available in your choice of standard silver or “space grey” to match your Apple hardware.
Whether you have a laptop that’s short on ports or a desktop that’s tucked far under your desk, a USB hub is a great way to ensure you’re never far from a port when you need one. This one from Anker provides four USB 3.0 ports in a convenient angled position and also includes a pair of velcro strips that’ll keep it in place.
It’s not the cheapest smartphone dock around, but Native Union’s DOCK+ is worth a look if you want something that’s sturdy and also looks good. In addition to keeping your iPhone (or iPad) charged, it’ll keep it propped up at an ideal angle for viewing notifications or making calls. If you’re looking for something a bit more versatile (and affordable), there’s also Lamicall Adjustable Cell Phone Stand for just $9.
A 13- or 15-inch laptop screen may be all you need for some tasks, but if you don’t already have one you may want to consider an external monitor to give you some screen space. Dell’s UltraSharp line of monitors have long be a go-to for many, and the 24-inch U2415 in particular is a great, relatively affordable choice that’s big but not too big.
If you’re really looking to go all out, the monitor’s thin border makes it ideal for placing two of them side-by-side.