Remaining seated at your desk all day has been shown to have negative effects on your health whether you’re working from home or have already returned to the office. This is why many have turned to standing desks which allow them to work from a seated position and then quickly raise their desk to a standing position at a moment’s notice.
Founded in 1982 by Harry Sweere, Ergotron created some of the first ergonomic tilt stands, mounting arms and desk stands. In addition to designing computer workstations based on ergonomic principles and scientific anthropometric data for more than 20 years, Sweere has also written several academic papers on ergonomics. From the company’s name alone, it’s clear that ergonomics plays a big role in all of Ergotron’s products.
Today Ergotron makes a wide variety of desks from mobile desks used in classrooms and hospitals to wall desks for those with less space as well as full desks. In this review we’ll be taking a closer look at the WorkFit-D Sit-Stand Desk, it’s assembly process and how easy it is to use so that you can determine whether it will make a good addition to your home office or workspace.
Pricing and availability
The Ergotron WorkFit-D Sit-Stand Desk is available from the Ergotron Store on Amazon for $908 if you choose the walnut top or for $975 if you choose the birch top. However, if you go on Ergotron’s website and click on the “Find a Reseller” button on the desk’s product page, you’ll see that it’s also available from Staples, Zones, Connection, Insight, ERGODIRECT and CDW for significantly cheaper.
For instance, at the time of writing, the Ergotron WorkFit-D with a walnut top can be purchased from Connection for $860 while the version of the desk with a birch top sells for $762 at CDW.
The Ergotron WorkFit-D is only available in one configuration which has a width of 47.6 inches, a depth of 23.5 inches, a minimum height of 30.6 inches and a maximum height of 50.6 inches. The desktop itself features a smooth laminate surface and its edges are black to match the desk’s legs and feet.
A lever on the right underside is used to raise or lower the desk and Ergotron points out on the WorkFit-D’s product page that its manual standing desk can be adjusted in less time when compared to an electric standing desk. In our testing we found this to be true and the desk’s patented mechanical lift technology provides both a smooth lift and a smooth descent.
In addition to being attached to the underside of the desktop, the desk’s legs are connected by two crossbars as well as a sync rod. Meanwhile a brake cable comes out of a hole in each leg and needs to be secured to the underside of the desk. The brake cable also needs to be secured to the top of each leg using a zip tie. However, slack needs to be left in the cable to allow the desk to rise up unrestricted.
There are also pre-drilled holes on the underside of the front of the desk to attach Erogotron’s Neo-Flex Underdesk Keyboard Arm. Although the company sells a Cable Management Kit separately on its site, this is more of a solution for running cables neatly as opposed to a cable management tray that can be used to house a power strip. Ergotron also sells a mountable power strip but it is designed for the company’s mobile carts and not for the WorkFit-D.
While most standing desks arrive in two boxes with one containing the legs and the other the desktop, the Ergotron WorkFit-D arrived in one box shrink wrapped to a wooden pallet to protect it during shipping.
Once unpacked, the box itself contains the desks legs, the desktop, two crossbars, the sync rod, an instruction manual and all of the screws and cable ties you’ll need to put it together.
The Ergotron WorkFit-D’s assembly process begins by attaching the legs to the desktop. However, you need to leave approximately 1/8 of an inch between the screw heads and the bottom of the desktop during assembly because you’ll fully tighten the screws after attaching both crossbars and the sync bar. This can be a bit confusing so make sure to read the directions carefully. Thankfully, Ergotron provides a number of notes to help you avoid damaging the desktop or legs while you’re putting together your desk.
From here, you’ll need to secure the brake cable to the underside of the desk using three cable clips. You also need to attach the brake cable to the top of the legs using cable ties though slack needs to be left in the cable so that the desk can remain unrestricted when being lifted or lowered.
The last step of setting up the Ergotron WorkFit-D involves removing the four brake stop screws from the bottom of both feet and from either side of the desk’s handle. These screws prevent the desk from moving during shipping and you’ll need to hold onto them in case you want to move the desk to a different location later on.
Now that your desk is ready to go, you need to install any equipment you want to use and do some final adjustments. This is because the WorkFit-D requires tension adjustments any time equipment such as a monitor or workstation is added or changed that results in a different mounted weight. Next you need to release the hand brake by pulling up on the desk’s lever to raise the desk to its maximum height. On the backside of each leg are two compartments that need to be opened so that you can loosen or tighten a bolt that controls the desk’s tension. Spinning the bolt left loosens tension for lighter loads while spinning it right tightens tension for heavier loads.
After we finished setting up the WorkFit-D, we tested out Ergotron’s manual standing desk using an ultrawide monitor from LG along with a desktop PC in a mini-ITX case. The desk itself can hold up to 165lbs (74.8kg) but the company recommends not exceeding 65lbs (29.5kg) so that the desk can be raised and lowered easily. We had no trouble lifting or lowering the desk with all of our equipment installed and likely could have added more without any problems.
However, as Ergotron’s cable management options are limited, we used an Ikea SIGNUM to hold a power strip under the desk which we plugged all of our devices into. Mounting it to the underside of the desk was a bit tricky as we didn’t want to obstruct the WorkFit-D’s brake cable. In the end, we managed to install our cable tray in front of the sync rod between the two legs.
During use, we found it quite easy to raise and lower the desk even with a heavier monitor and desktop PC. To raise the desk, you pull the lever with one hand and use the other to pull the desktop up. Once raised, the desk clicks into place so that you know it’s secure.
As the Ergotron WorkFit-D is available for under $1000, we’ll be looking at other manual standing desks that offer similar features at a similar price point.
The Vari Standing Desk costs $595 and unlike the WorkFit-D, it is only available in one color, white. While this desk lacks customization options, assembly is a cinch and you only need to screw in the four legs as vari’s rowing-lift mechanism comes pre-built and attached to the underside of the desktop. Another plus is that the review model we tested came with a cable management tray pre-attached to the back of the desk with holes on either side for running a power strip cable to a power outlet. It’s worth noting that due to the unique design of Vari’s Standing Desk, the desktop protrudes out slightly when raised.
The ModTable Hand Crank Standing Desk is available for $519 with a medium desktop that measures 48 inches in width and 24 inches in depth. Unlike the Ergotron WorkFit-D, this desk is available in four different colors and there are also several desktop sizes available depending on the size of your workspace. However, what could be a potential turnoff is the fact that it uses a hand crank to raise and lower the desk. You’ll also need to purchase a cable management tray separately for the high price of $79.
The Ergotron WorkFit-D Sit-Stand Desk provides almost everything one could want in a manual standing desk. Being able to quickly raise or lower the desk is a big plus as cheaper electric standing desks can take so long to adjust that many people end up just working in a sitting position all day. We also liked the fact that the WorkFit-D uses a patented mechanical lift system as opposed to a crank to lift or lower the desk.
While we would like to see Ergotron offer a cable management tray as an optional accessory, installing our own cable management solution was easy enough. Additional color options besides birch and walnut would also be a welcome addition so that users can have a desk that better fits the look of their workspace. Still though, the birch and walnut desktops will fit in well in both office and education settings.
If you don’t want to have to deal with the extra cables that come with an electric standing desk and want a manual standing desk that can be raised or lowered quickly, Ergtron’s WorkFit-D is an excellent choice thanks to its solid construction and the company’s monitor arms, keyboard tray and other accessories.