Where have all the good computer desks gone?

As you may or may not know, depending on whether you listened to our last podcast all the way through, I’ve moved to beautiful Vancouver, British Columbia. A few days after landing last Monday, I signed a one-year lease on a far-too-expensive apartment, and I’m now in search of some furniture. Including a desk.

Back in France, I used to have a cheap, table-style desk with no frills and no sticky-out bits—just a no-nonsense melamine panel, about 63″ wide, supported by three other such panels and some screws to hold everything together. I gave the thing away to a local charity before moving, but a picture of it has survived from one of my older blog posts:

Why didn’t I take it with me? The melamine surface got a little warped over the years, and I simply thought I could find a nicer, sturdier replacement in Canada. That’s turned out to be much more difficult than I anticipated.

My first stop was Ikea. This L-shaped Galant desk tickled my fancy until I realized two things: one, $419.99 CAD works out to just over €300, and the exact same desk sells for €209 in France. Two, Ikea tells me shipping it over to my new place would cost more than $100. Ha ha; no thanks. (I would pick it up myself, but I don’t drive, and I doubt a desk of that size would fit in a regular car to begin with.)

No matter, I thought; there must be plenty of places to get office furniture. I checked out Sears, Staples, Office Depot, BedCetera, and a few other places. For every single one of those companies, a home office desk apparently has to resemble this:

Source: Staples.

Let’s see… from left to right, we have a cabinet (or coffin, as Scott puts it) for a PC enclosure to get nice and stuffy, not to mention awkward to access; a keyboard tray, which likely sits too low, offers too little mousing area, and refuses to stay put while I type; and a minuscule filing cabinet embedded into the contraption, because naturally, no home user would ever dream of having their own metallic filing cabinet with enough room to put all their papers. Those things are for important business people only.

Literally every desk I’ve come across seems to have at least one of the elements above, be it the useless keyboard tray, the PC coffin, or some sort of uselessly tiny embedded cabinet. Is it really so hard to design and sell a big, flat surface positioned a reasonable distance from the floor with room to put whatever the customer pleases either on or below it?  I suppose my needs are somewhat out of the ordinary, since I have both a laptop and a desktop PC with a couple of monitors, and I work from home. But I really can’t be the only one who just wants a simple work surface to set up as I please. Can I?

In the end, I expect I’ll either crack and give Ikea an unreasonable amount of money for a mildly shoddy but well-designed desk or simply purchase a big dining room table and use that, instead. Ugh.

Comments closed
    • neonicblue
    • 9 years ago

    hey wanna try reviewing this ?
    lol

    §[< http://www.novelquest.com/emperor.html<]§

    • FubbHead
    • 10 years ago

    I’ve always wondered if the Jerker desk had the same name abroad. Now I know, and I find it hilarious. 🙂

    But a Galant board with T-legs is almost the same as a basic Jerker, maybe that’s why they discontinued it? Although I can’t find any shelve accessory, like the Jerker had..

    Using a Galant board with A-legs myself..

    • cynan
    • 10 years ago

    Ikea France must have been having a sale, because, the desk in the link is now €269 and €329 when configured with the T-legs.

    Ikeas website is very confusing – one configuration of the same apparent desk varies in price by choice of legs while the another identical desk does not…

    Anyway, the French prices now seem to be more or less on par with the CAD ones..

    • Forge
    • 10 years ago

    The magic word is SteelCase. Call up local businesses of decent size, and ask them if they dispose of surplus office furnishings on a regular basis. I got several large and good condition SteelCase desks for between 0-50$ over the years. You could literally park a car on two of these, and they’re not that bulky/heavy.

    • elty
    • 10 years ago

    Ikea has some cheaper desk. Buy a table top (~$40), 4 legs ($10-$20 each) and assemble yourself. Not a corner unit, but nice, big desk with no gmmick.

    • hermanshermit
    • 10 years ago

    Buy (or beg or borrow these thing are often given away free) second-hand professional grade equipment when an office refurbishes or moves – really the world is full of this stuff.

    There is no comparision in quality between this designed to be used every day for decades in a business environment and the cardboard junk you get from Ikea or staples. This also gives you things like solid steel adjustable height legs etc.

    Mine cost $25, is in near-perfect condition and is better than anything you have discussed. It’s also good to recycle.

      • cynan
      • 10 years ago

      Except it probably weighs like 200 Ibs. At least with the Ikea stuff you can move it in and set it up your self (for the most part). FYI, the Ikea Galants come with height adjustable steel legs and frames. Only the table top is particle board (or whatever) and is plenty sturdy for most office use.

      Really, it’s the steel frame and legs of the Galant that give it so much more utility than their original table-tops with modular legs that simply screwed into the particle board.

    • Taddeusz
    • 10 years ago

    My biggest complaint about office/computer furniture is the utter lack of reasonable cable management. Any furniture I’ve ever seen either lacks any kind of cable management or it was tacked on as an afterthought.

    The other furniture I’ve seen that has some kind of cable management has little cubbies that no reasonably sized adult could possibly be expected to fish cables through. Again, probably tacked on as an afterthought rather than part of the original design.

    It also cracks me up when I see the placement of the holes in the desk for the monitor, mouse, and keyboard. Somehow they always put the hole right where the monitor should sit rather than behind it.

    I have seen very few designs that tackled cable management more elegantly. Most of the designs I’ve seen are very poor in that area.

    • wira020
    • 10 years ago

    Not married yet, so i dont really understand why i would need $100++ table… $40, that’s as far as i go… even if i won the lottery ( which i kinda won $3000 once)… or is table really pricey in certain country or something?…

    I have no issue with composite wood table… with good finish it usually wont give out to wear and tear… it’s cheap and light… what more could i ask…

      • bdwilcox
      • 10 years ago

      Did you get that Fanatec Clubsport Package for $350?

      • PerfectCr
      • 10 years ago

      Wow very organized setup there. Impressive.

    • raen7
    • 10 years ago

    I’m enjoying this thread… Lots of great desks, lots of bad ones too. Tell me, why is it that all these modern ones feel the need to do this multi-level sh*t with the platforms for monitors & speakers, sometimes even more. And usually the keyboard tray is way down low, so you’ve got like a full foot or more (0.3 meters for you Canucks!) between where your hands are and where your screen is. Don’t the designers realize how bad it is for you to look *up* at your screen? You should be looking very slightly downward, the top of the bezel should be eye-level, and the screen should be tilted back not forward. It’s shocking how many desks are built contrary to this guideline, and even more shocking how many people actually adjust their existing furniture to do the opposite (setting chair height way too low, raising the monitor & tilting it forward). But I digress…

      • bdwilcox
      • 10 years ago

      They should have renamed it the Wanker.

      • Metasheep
      • 10 years ago

      I’ve seen the Fredrik in person and it is MUCH smaller than my Jerker. It’s like the kid’s version of a Jerker.

        • alexwalter88
        • 10 years ago

        lmao. I don’t know if it was intentional or not, but what you just said was hilarious.

    • yogibbear
    • 10 years ago

    Do not go to a chain store. Then you will find what you want.

    • awakeningcry
    • 10 years ago

    I bought that GALANT desk from Ikea, although mine was shorter at one end, with a semi-circular finish, and it cost me around about 150GBP. Ended up keeping my computer on top of it in the end…
    Then I moved out of my parents place and had no room to take it with me =(

    • mcmillin63
    • 10 years ago

    I use a 6 foot folding table that I bought at Sam’s Club 9-10 years ago.
    I liked it so well I bought 2 more tables.
    I have my system on it as well as a laser printer. My wife uses the second table for her system and an inkjet printer.

    They are lightweight, durable and portable.

    • gerryg
    • 10 years ago

    Nothin’ good out there – build your own is the only way to get a decent desk. I’d love to see some site have a design competition, though, and sell the winning entrie(s). Crowdsourcing at it’s best, and in an area where it’s truly needed.

    • internetsandman
    • 10 years ago

    Welcome to BC man, it’s quite an honor to have you =P

    Anyway, to solve your current dilemma, if I were you, I’d simply build the desk myself. Just like with computers, it’s always cheaper to do the job yourself, and you wind up with a product that is more suited to your ideals than if you buy one prebuilt

      • BooTs
      • 10 years ago

      I saw at least one other reply mentioning building your own desk and it is such a painfully obvious idea that I can’t understand how I’ve never considered it before. A+

    • Sumache
    • 10 years ago

    Welcome to Canada!

    I had trouble finding a computer desk as well but in the end, I managed to find a old dinner table my neighbour didn’t want so I use that now as my desk. Kijiji could be a good friend in finding that table.

    The table is about 180cm x 120cm and sits about a metre tall and it’s sturdy enough for my stuff.

    If you put your tower on top though you may want to consider building a little support for some dinner tables as they’re aren’t designed to handle the weight of a tower these days.

      • _Sigma
      • 10 years ago

      Kiji is a great idea.

    • kLeos
    • 10 years ago

    i bought an IKEA desk for around $170 it is really huge and I can fit 2-3 monitors on it, it’s also got a top shelf where I can put other stuff

    IKEA is the way to go, office depot and all these other places can’t even compete

    • ShadowTiger
    • 10 years ago

    Go to a lumberyard

    Get them to cut you 2 40 inch boards and one 60 inch board of whatever wood you want. Then buy a hammer and nails. Hammer the nails into the boards, and voila… you have a nice simple desk that’s exactly the size you want made from the wood you want. And it costs less than $100. It will take the less time than shopping around and waiting for shipping.

      • jss21382
      • 10 years ago

      you’d want a third board connecting the two sides, otherwise it would likely collapse from a lack of lateral stability.

    • swaaye
    • 10 years ago

    Big ugly plastic folding table here. Something like 5’x3′, I think, similar to that snazzy table in the top pic. It works fine except for the fact that plastic sags over time with weight on it. I’ve been using it for years, regardless. And it’s not exactly eye catching, but I’ve never been very good with that aspect of things anyway lol.

    And no, most people can’t comprehend why we need so much space for our computer stuff.

    Also, I’m 6’6″ tall, which causes problems with knee space under most tables. Those keyboard trays are not usable.

    • kamikaziechameleon
    • 10 years ago

    Do as i did, buy a circular saw and build your own, I have a 4 foot keyboard tray and built in drafting surface. the desk I designed came out to be a corner design @ 5×7 with angular shelving underneath so as to allow for more foot room, the over all height is 34 inches, works well with a drafting chair.

    • Coran Fixx
    • 10 years ago

    I bought a ten foot section of kitchen countertop on clearance and set it on two topless pressboard desks, ten inches from the wall. Then I set up two by ten boards on top of the countertop back splash and put up L brackets on the wall to support it. Put my printer, monitor speakers, case on the 2x10s and leaves plenty of space for crap on the countertop. Works good and room for three full rigs if I need the space.

    • TechNut
    • 10 years ago

    Welcome to Canada-Eh!

    I’d check out Canadian Tire or Wal-Mart if you are looking for a “cheap” desk. Something nicer is always expensive here. It’ll get more expensive for you too, considered you just moved to Communist BC, where your sales tax is going to go up on July 1.

    I’ve been looking at places like Mobilia (http://www.mobilia.ca/). Yes the price will be a little higher, but you’ll graduate from college/student living furniture to the “real” stuff. I’m saving my penny’s for a full desk with back cabinets, you know, “The Donald” look. It will look quite impressive with 2×24″ displays.

      • sigher
      • 10 years ago

      I see you use the same space-age cable management as I do 🙂

        • Jon
        • 10 years ago

        Heh, these pics were taken years ago pre new cable management era 😛

        It looks WAAAAAY better now. There’s no wires on the ground. Everything was lifted and mounted on peg board beneath the table.

    • derFunkenstein
    • 10 years ago

    I just use a 60″x24″ table with a 30″ tall surface. Forget the desks, this is cheaper and it gives me the surface I need.

    • colinstu
    • 10 years ago

    Nice to see you using your IBM Model M still? I’ve been using mine for years… GREAT board! (Made in May 11 1989!)

      • redavni
      • 10 years ago

      very nice desk man.

      • wira020
      • 10 years ago

      Wow, you got a talent if you managed to build that yourself… it looks good..

      • derFunkenstein
      • 10 years ago

      that is a hot setup. Good work.

    • jtsmith581
    • 10 years ago

    If you don’t care about appearances, I’ve found that it’s hard to beat the price/performance of adjustable utility tables. I got a 48″w * 24″d * 21-30″h table five years ago for about $100 under the brand name Studio RTA (I think), and I’m very glad I chose this product. The long-term benefit of having both your chair and working surface at your ideal heights is difficult to overstate, and I’ve personally never been satisfied with split level surfaces or keyboard trays. My desk is just wide enough for a 30″ monitor flanked by two inward-canted portrait-mode 21″ UXGAs and doesn’t feel like it wastes surface depth/area behind them. Choices for ‘real’ adjustable desks that did what I wanted were 5-20x more costly with absolutely no improvements in comfort and often including the drawer/cabinet nonsense mentioned above. Spend your money on a better chair, keyboard, and/or monitor instead, and you won’t regret it.

    • ludi
    • 10 years ago

    /[

    • veryfurry
    • 10 years ago

    I agree. Computer desks are anything but a suitable workspace. I use tables. The one I’m using now is 8′ by 3′ and is made of solid wood: it’s called a harvest table. I use an assortment of coffee cups, baskets, and pottery bowls to hold all my doodads.

    This table holds 2 towers, 2 large CRT monitors, 2 keyboards, 2 corded mice, a router, speakers, corded land-line telephone, ashtrays, cell phones, camera, calendar, lamp, and it has lots of workspace left.

    A good option for you is to check out Kijiji and Craigslist for a second-hand kitchen or dining room table made of wood.

    • Galvnze
    • 10 years ago

    Ikea is still the way to go. You really have to avoid anything that is marketed as a computer desk though. Look for a traditional desk, as they usually have the flat real estate that I think makes for a good desk. Real wood (kinda), great stain, and no frilly features.

    • spigzone
    • 10 years ago

    $100 will buy a VERY sturdy commercial grade folding table, available in a variety of sizes.

    • The Dark One
    • 10 years ago

    Ah, the good ol’ MX-1000. Are you still using it?

    • oldDummy
    • 10 years ago

    To me a dining room table would be the best idea.
    My desk cost a whole lot of money otherwise I would follow my own advice.

    • Skrying
    • 10 years ago

    If a desk has a keyboard tray then that desk is most certainly doing it wrong. In fact if a desk’s surface is anything more than absolutely flat it is a poor desk. It shocks me how hard and how much it costs to get a desk that is simply a flat table but looks nice. I’d even settle for poor materials but even doing that doesn’t open you to a ton of options beyond Ikea which if you’re not near a store is no longer cheap.

    • SaltyDog21
    • 10 years ago

    Strange that this topic never really seemed to come up before with how it affects so many… Anyway, after the frustration in figuring out a ‘desk’ that would last, the following is what I did that has worked out perfectly:

    First define your use model for the desk to justify the cost ranges?
    – 5 minutes a day (go cheap and who cares)
    – 60 minutes a day (getting a little serious but hard to spend too much money on a good desk).
    – 60+ Minutes (or hours) a day (come on, get a good one that will last and not piss you off) Gamers fall into this obviously..
    – Wife factor (if your married and she gets involved, your screwed regardless unless you have “your own room” like I fortunately have)..

    Desks:
    – Sorry, if you are strapped for cash, you’re stuck with the Staples/ Walmart/ Target/ creative approach or what you get lucky with on eBay.

    – Otherwise, I found the solution under my nose. I sat at a desk at work that had a great ‘corner’ computer/monitor setup with plenty of good solid desk on the left and right sides… So a quick trip to a nearby office desk store (that caters to small and large businesses) shocked me… I paid $1100 for a corner desk (with left and right side desk space attachments + rolling matching filing cabinets). I was able to get all of it in great room matching colors with the support paneling being thin strong metal. The desk area is sleek, large, can easily support lots of weight, such as the old CRT tank monitors (that no longer exist), and very comfortable to sit at and work or play FPS games for hours at a time let alone room on the sides for project work of any kind. The most important thing is that nothing about it pisses me off and it has already lasted almost 10 years with absolutely no hint of wear or tear after that time..!

    Summary: There are good options out there to suit your needs, just look in the right places. If you hope to have it last, invest in one accordingly.

    • Bauxite
    • 10 years ago

    My rule #1: no laminate/particleboard/plastic

    This pretty much eliminates 99% of the crap available on the market.
    Whats left over is overpriced stuff that is usually more for looks than use, and always too low/cramped/fragile/etc.

    I don’t care for drawers or levels or other crap, maximum flat usable surface at perfect keyboard and mouse height is what I want. You can always tuck a short file cabinet or 2 underneath, one on wheels is ideal for cable access etc. (we all have way too much junk that a meager desk could handle, your desk is your workbench not storage)

    Build your own, a good solid and smooth piece of wood is the main part.
    As for anything besides wood, I wouldn’t want to work on say, granite all day, too hard and cold.

    Beyond that make sure you have very sturdy legs that are fastened as good as can be. My ‘test’ of a proper enthusiast desk is that two people standing on top should like they are standing on the floor, the fact there is room for two people on top is a given.

    • shaq_mobile
    • 10 years ago

    my dad and i built a desk out of cherry a few years ago. we shellaced it to preserve it. i believe its 28 inches deep, 52 inches wide and 29 inches tall and 26 inches from the ground to the skirt. the skirt is kinda small because i needed to fit my knees under the desk while at the same time the desk needed to be parallel to my forearms while using the computer. the desk is pretty baller, although its simple, it looks really good now that the cherry has had a few years to age. i need to clean it up and use it as a proper desk though.

    • paulWTAMU
    • 10 years ago

    My next desk will be a table over 2 filing cabinets. Maybe with some shelves/drawers/cabinets under it for storage.

    • Chrispy_
    • 10 years ago

    Another vote from me for dining tables making the best desk!

    Varnished, 6′ x 3′ slab of wood (birch in my case) with four indestructable steel legs.

    No wobble
    No stupid accessories to get in the way
    Perfect height (dining tables are usually sold with several height options, or “choose your legs”)

    The best cable management sytem I’ve ever come across was something I knocked up in 10 minutes: It involves a single 6′ x 2′ piece of 1/2″ MDF, painted the same colour as the wall the desk is against, eight holes and four big-ass zip-ties. Drill the holes such that you can tie the board to the two back table legs and let the board sit at ground level.

    What you end up with is a four inch space between the wall and the board that has a four inch gap between the underside of the desk and the board. If you can’t hide your cables, plugs and extension leads behind a 6′ x 2′ board, then there is no hope for you.

    Last winter, I added a footrest by putting a small shelf on the back board and velcro-ing a narrow cushion from the backrest of an old wicker-chair on top.

      • CampinCarl
      • 10 years ago

      I bought the Galaxy desk instead of the Trinity…but I almost wish I’d gone for the Trinity if only so I had somewhere ‘inside’ the desk to put my computer and maybe my printer.

      One nice thing I find is that my keyboard tray is large enough for me to actually use it with my big, hulking, original G15. While my mousing surface is not LARGE by any means, it’s still roomy enough with the tray under the desk.

      I only wish that the monitor stand was height-adjustable.

    • burntham77
    • 10 years ago

    l[

      • Meadows
      • 10 years ago

      He doesn’t come from the US. In Europe, owning a car is not on par with having a wallet.

      • PetMiceRnice
      • 10 years ago

      Heh, I’m approaching 40 years old, have lived in Canada all my life, and I have never driven in my life before. Never really had the desire to.

      • Ushio01
      • 10 years ago

      $6.89+ a US galleon in france at the end of 09. I’m in the UK were it’s very similar so a car is way out of my price range as well.

    • Ushio01
    • 10 years ago

    I just bolted 3 shelves to a wall myself as long as you don’t sit on it, it works really well.

    • Helmore
    • 10 years ago

    My vote goes to the giant dinner table.

    • edh
    • 10 years ago

    Built my own: 4×8′ 3/4″ furniture-grade plywood, 2′ x 5.5′ section cut away (except the interior corner is a 1′ radius curve – 1 quarter of a circle). The resultant desk surface is 2′ deep as I face it and 2.5′ deep at my right side (and could easily be flipped should I prefer the deeper par to be on the left at a future installation). Used the material cut away to create a dual monitor support shelf 8 inches tall, 8 inches deep and with a 45-degree bend sized appropriately for a pair of 24″ 16:12 monitors. The surface sits on an open grid frame constructed of 2×2 lumber. The legs (6 of them) are from a kit intended to convert a door into a table. All materials came from Home Depot.

      • anotherengineer
      • 10 years ago

      Exactly what I going to do when I get the time. Dont care for the oak veneer plywood, thinking I may go maple.

      But I agree, you look at these desks now which are particle board with a picture of wood glued to it for 250 bucks +, while I can get a 4’x8′ sheet of 3/4″ thick hardwood veneered plywood for about 70 bucks depending on the type of wood. Just need the tools and the time, and time is a rare comodity.

      • anotherengineer
      • 10 years ago

      Exactly what I going to do when I get the time. Dont care for the oak veneer plywood, thinking I may go maple.

      But I agree, you look at these desks now which are particle board with a picture of wood glued to it for 250 bucks +, while I can get a 4’x8′ sheet of 3/4″ thick hardwood veneered plywood for about 70 bucks depending on the type of wood. Just need the tools and the time, and time is a rare comodity.

      • VaultDweller
      • 10 years ago

      One of my desks looks identical to that one, but mine fits a 24″ monitor just fine. It couldn’t take anything larger, though.

    • Richie_G
    • 10 years ago

    I’ve got a huge desk I salvaged from an office that was refurnishing about 10 years ago. It’s modular and absolutely solid (by that I mean the drawers could be attached to either side or removed completely – which I did).

    Aren’t there any websites that specialise in selling ex-office gear around you?

    • Firestarter
    • 10 years ago

    My desk is a kitchen surface (nice and slick, easy cleaning) with a few of those cheap Ikea desk legs underneath. It makes for a royal one person desk or a slightly cozy 2 person desk.

    • Dazrin
    • 10 years ago

    Regarding desks, my mom found some 4’x8’x5/8″ pre-laminated panels and cut them to the shape she wanted (painted the cut edges with a glossy paint to match the surface, plain white for hers) . She was making a sewing table, but the same applies for you. It ended up being a long L with an 8′ leg and a 4′ leg, all about 24″-30″ deep. For supports, she used a mixture of filing cabinets (two full drawers) at the ends and some post around the perimeter. I am sure you could just use posts all around. They make some screw-in, bolt-on fittings for pipe (3/4″ or 1″ steel pipe) that work great for that.

    Congrats on the move, I missed the podcast (it has downloaded, just haven’t had time to listen). I hope this leads to some collaboration between TechReport and SilentPCReview. I know Mike Chin is based in Vancouver BC. My two favorite sites.

      • BlackStar
      • 10 years ago

      A techreport / silentpcreview collaboration would rock! My favorite tech-related sites, too.

    • tocatl
    • 10 years ago

    My pc desk is 95 inches long & 55 inches tall, its custom made, cause i found all the commercial desks too expensive & small , i had to be patient with the carpenter, but it was worth the wait

    • Voldenuit
    • 10 years ago

    They’ve all been replaced by cheap Swedish crap.

    • iamajai
    • 10 years ago

    Cyril, welcome to Vancouver…if you’re not too far out in the suburbs I can probably help you take a desk home from IKEA…

    • insulin_junkie72
    • 10 years ago

    $420 Canadian for something that’s primarily a slab of particleboard?!?!? Ugh.

    I’m in the group that home-built mine, using some assorted pieces from a pair of 15-20 year old Sauder desks that the desktops were beat to hell on.

    ’bout $20 at the local mega-home center later, and I made a decent L-shape desk w/ shelving and a hutch. If I want to change it around, it’s easy enough to take apart and reconfigure to whatever I want.

    • DrDillyBar
    • 10 years ago

    I went to a govenrment surplus store, and paid ~$65 for a desk that is really, more like a … table. But it’s solid like a rock and is about 3×6 feet.

      • dpaus
      • 10 years ago

      I did the same years ago, and got a filthy ex-RCMP desk for $10. It came apart easily, and from the underside, I discovered it was solid maple. Some cleaning, a light sanding and then a few coats of varathane and I’ve got a beautiful, beautiful desk – that weighs about 2 tons.

    • d0g_p00p
    • 10 years ago

    I bought a AnthroBench a few years ago and will never need a new desk again. It might be out of your price range but it’s well worth the money.

      • NeelyCam
      • 10 years ago

      Love it! Just bought one – thanks for the linky! I’ve been looking for one for my bedroom; this fits perfectly, and matches the decor.

      I can’t believe I said “decor”

        • netkcid
        • 10 years ago

        =D and it is made from rubberwood, so it’ll last forever.

      • Hattig
      • 10 years ago

      Ah, I see it has what I call the “shin destroyer” – a printer shelf exactly where you want to put your feet.

        • NeelyCam
        • 10 years ago

        I call it a foot rest.

      • crichards
      • 10 years ago

      That’s superb!

    • mbutrovich
    • 10 years ago

    I still have no idea why Ikea discontinued the Jerker. It’s exactly what you want, and I cherish mine. I got it for $100.

    • Sargent Duck
    • 10 years ago

    I’m using one of those fold-up tables that I picked up at Canadian Tire for $50. It was only supposed to be temporary, but the height is right and…I don’t like any desk with those fancy thing-a-ma-jigs.

    Welcome to Canada, eh? You’ll quickly learn a few things about Canada.

    1) Tim Horton’s owns Canada
    2) Canadian Tire is the perfect guy store
    3) Hockey is life
    4) Find on-line stores in America that ship to Canada. Despite our dollar being equal to the USD right now, stores still feel they need to charge us a premium.

    • anamericangod
    • 10 years ago

    I am using a flat solid oak table top, with steel legs, that I got from an old elementary school that went through a full remodel. Has to be from the 40s or 50s. Basically a table top with 50 years of graffiti on it. I had never seen anything this sturdy in a store before, so I couldn’t pass it up.

    Cleaned up the legs, painted them jet black. Primed the top a nice white, liked how it looked, and voila, I was finished.

    Unfortunately, I didn’t know that primer is primer for a reason…I now have some nice smudge marks where my arms and elbows rest constantly. Almost like the primer is melting.

    I’ll get around to repainting it at some point…

    • FireGryphon
    • 10 years ago

    Two sawhorses and a slab of MDF will work. You can also put some MDF (or a slab of anything) over two filing cabinets.

      • PhilipMcc
      • 10 years ago

      You beat me to the idea of sawhorses.

      Alternative – a flat interior door and two sawhorses.

        • sircharles32
        • 10 years ago

        My computer desk is an interior door sitting on two halves of a steel wire book case (my version of “rack” mounting). I used it when I was in grad school, put it into storage, and eventually came back to it. It’s economical, not too deep, and fits two Dell 24″ wide screen LCDs nicely. I don’t think I could use anything else, allows me to spread out, without having to pile things on top of anything.

      • axeman
      • 10 years ago

      Better yet, use an old door. It’s super strong, and after you take out the knob, a perfect hold to put some wires through.

        • dextrous
        • 10 years ago

        My desk is literally a door sitting on top of two small file cabinets. I like it a lot.

    • Usacomp2k3
    • 10 years ago

    Check out a Goodwill/ Salvation Army, or something similar. Or Craigslist.

    • Captain Ned
    • 10 years ago

    I’m using a 30YO [/handwave] pseudo-butcherblock kitchen table, say 48″x36″. Boxen live on the floor, and there’s plenty of room between the legs for the subwoofer and the pedal set for the Logitech Momo wheel.

    Don’t look solely at computer desks. Look through IKEA and the other cheap furniture makers for kitchen tables. If it’s 36″ deep there’s plenty of room for a keyboard and a 20″ tube if you’re still a CRT user.

    • Joel H.
    • 10 years ago

    Cyril,

    I feel your pain. My computer desk–which I love–is 25 years old.

    • Farting Bob
    • 10 years ago

    In the past ive used 4 stacks of bricks (thats right, my desk was height adjustable) with a thick piece of wood on top. I have since upgraded though.
    But then again, my bed is held together with large amounts of duct tape and my clothes hang from an old piece of pipe i found.
    Furniture doesnt have to cost $400 if you dont want it to.

      • eitje
      • 10 years ago

      for a guy named “Farting Bob”, I’m surprised at how classy you are. 🙂

      • SecretMaster
      • 10 years ago

      TR has such interesting readers.

    • ChrisDTC
    • 10 years ago

    I have the biggest rectangular version of the IKEA Galant and I like it. I dont remember it being all that expensive, maybe 175 US

    • SecretMaster
    • 10 years ago

    I don’t know how the Staples is up in your neck of the woods, but usually you can order just the desk portion of the ridiculous assemblage. Usually all the parts come in sets; main desk + add ons (such as filing cabinets, coffins, etc). At least when we purchased two new computer desks from Staples, that was the case. They were part of an entire “office suite” thingy, but we just bought the desk with no ridiculous add ons.

    • grantmeaname
    • 10 years ago

    I’m using a big table. That’s the only kind of desk I’ll ever buy, and it’s the only kind that really works for me.

    • potatochobit
    • 10 years ago

    our generation does not use a computer desk

    they want a multimedia center and a dinner table set all in one

    I get most of my stuff from ikea and office max/depot

    i really hate pull out keyboard trays since I like to lean back a lot while online

    get a nice sturdy table and you can add whatever you want on top or underneath for organization and it can still look good

    oh, and you definitely need a nice gaming mouse pad
    don’t use the desk

    • MadManOriginal
    • 10 years ago

    Go to a home center. Get a big piece of wood (well, veneered MDF most likely.) Add legs. Done.

      • ClickClick5
      • 10 years ago

      Just make one of them. Original has the idea…
      That way you can pick your stain and make it how /[

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This