Varidesk Pro Height-Adjustable Standing Desk Review

Varidesk Pro standing desk
Varidesk Pro
Desktop Sit-Stand Desk
by Varidesk
$ 375 Basic configuration
$ 495 Deluxe configuration

See below for pricing details.

  • Editor Rating

  • 76%
  • 76%

  • Varidesk Pro
  • Reviewed by:
  • Published on:
  • Last modified: August 9, 2016
  • Shopping & Buying
    Editor: 100%
  • Shipping & Delivery
    Editor: 90%
  • Assembly
    Editor: 90%
  • Engineering
    Editor: 79%
  • Ergonomics
    Editor: 71%
  • Warranty
    Editor: 20%
  • Customer Service
    Editor: 60%

Review Details

The Varidesk Pro is a height-adjustable desktop add-on that lets you work standing up at your existing sitting-height desk.

The Varidesk’s low price, simple design, and easy operation have helped make it one of the most popular standing desks on the market. You may have seen the news stories when the White House specifically requested the Varidesk for its multi-year $700,000 standing-desk plan.

The Varidesk posts a reasonably good score when evaluated by the criteria we apply to all standing desks. Our criteria are biased a bit against this category of standing desks (height-adjustable desktop add-ons), since they take over your existing desk top. But if you just want a simple height-adjustable workstation to rest your computer and accessories on while you alternate between working standing up and sitting down, then the Varidesk may work fine for you.

Here’s how the Varidesk measures up to our review criteria.

Shopping & Buying Experience (5% of total score)

The Varidesk website is informative and professionally designed. It’s easy to find answers to common questions. For the most part, it avoids marketing hyperbole and gives you a realistic sense of what to expect from its desk. Like many standing-desk marketing sites, it lumps together the generic benefits of standing and its unique product features.

The site includes a privacy policy and a page with contact information. It uses a secure connection to process orders and otherwise inspires confidence during the ordering process.

Shopping & Buying Experience score 5/5 (100%)

Shipping & Delivery Experience (10% of total score)

We ordered our Varidesk May 31, 2016 and received it just a few days later on June 3, 2016.

Our Varidesk showed up in good shape in one cardboard container.

Varidesk offers free delivery on all orders to the lower 48 U.S. states and the European Union and ships to several other international destinations.

Shipping & Delivery Experience score 9/10 (90%)

Ease & Elegance of Assembly (10% of total score)

The Varidesk arrives pre-assembled. All you have to do is take it out of the box and set it down on your desk. As soon as you find the height-adjustment levers under each side of the desk, you’re ready to go. The only difficulty here was getting the unit out of the box – at almost 50 pounds, this unit is pretty heavy.

Assembly Experience score 9/10 (90%)

Engineering (30% of total score)

The Varidesk is a well-designed and well-made piece of furniture.

Style and Design (5% of Engineering score)

Well9to5 isn’t a style publication, so we don’t make esthetic judgments in our evaluations. Rather, this style and design score is based primarily on the range of options (size, color, shape, etc.) presented to you as you choose your standing desk.

In the case of The Varidesk you get two color choices (black or white) and several different shapes and configurations to choose from.

3 of 5 possible Style & Design points

Stability (40% of Engineering score)

TheVaridesk was very stable on the several different conventional desks that we tried it out on. It’s very solid on the front-to-back axis and wobbles just a very little bit with side-to-side pressure (the old-fashioned sitting desk on which we first evaluated it actually had more side-to-side wiggle).

The Varidesk’s weight and textured bottom surface keep the unit from sliding around the surface it rests on.

34 of 40 possible Stability points

Sturdiness (40% of Engineering score)

The Varidesk felt very sturdy to us in normal use. Once you adjust it to one of its clicked-in positions, the lifting mechanism is solid at both sitting and standing heights.

34 of 40 possible Sturdiness points

Details (5% of Engineering score)

The Varidesk offers no cable management, power management, or other extras.

1 of 5 possible Details points

Materials & Surfaces (5% of Engineering score)

The Varidesk work surfaces are a core of high-density fiberboard (HDF) with a polyvinyl chloride (PVC) coating . The work surfaces have held up nicely during our multi-week evaluation period. The metal frame is made of powdercoated steel.

4 of 5 possible Materials & Surfaces points

Construction (5% of Engineering score)

The Varidesk is well constructed. It moves fairly smoothly up and down, albeit with a few little jiggles and hiccups as it settles into one of its 11 pre-set height slots.

3 of 5 possible Construction points

Maintenance (0% of Engineering score)

Varidesk recommends that you use a warm damp cloth to clean the surface of the desk and to ensure that it’s dry before putting your gear back on it.

Engineering score 23.7/30 (79%)

Ergonomics (35% of total score)

Ergonomics is the science of balancing comfort and productivity in the workplace. The Varidesk gets points for letting you adjust the height without removing your gear.But because it takes over your existing desktop, replacing it with a relatively small work surface, and because it swings through an arc as you height-adjust it, the Varidesk earns only a medium ergonomics score.

Comfort (40% of Ergonomics score)

Comfort is perhaps the most subjective of the criteria we evaluated. Comfort at a standing desk is determined to a large extent by how adjustable its height is and how flexibly it lets you organize your work gear.

The Varidesk offers 11 different height options, so it can accommodate a good range of user sizes. It’s work surface is relatively small, at least compared with a conventional desktop. But it still has plenty of room for your monitor, keyboard, wrist rest, and mouse, as well as a few papers and knick knacks.

If you use an external monitor, the Varidesk is most ergonomic in the sitting position. As you move into a standing position, you lose the keyboard tray (which stays resting on the desk) and so have to rest both your monitor and keyboard tray on the same surface. If you’re used to working on a laptop, this is not a big deal. Also, note that other Varidesk models offer a keyboard tray that goes up and down with the work surface.

The edges and corners of the surfaces are smooth and rounded, making it easy on our forearms and wrists as they rest on the surface.

Both I and the Hub evaluators found The Varidesk to be comfortable to use over multi-hour stretches.

30 of 40 possible Comfort points

Productivity (45% of Ergonomics score)

To be productive at a standing desk, you need room for your computer, paper, and other materials that you need to do your job. The Varidesk Pro’s 36″ x 23″ top is smaller than a conventional desk, so if you’re used to spreading out papers and other work materials, you may feel a little cramped.

In the active office, we also judge a desk by how easy it is to change back and forth from sitting to standing positions. The Varidesk can take as much as 35 pounds of you gear along as you adjust its height, so it scores fairly well here.

31 of 45 possible Productivity points

Portability (5% of Ergonomics score)

Modern offices flexible and many folks want or need to change locations throughout the work day. The Varidesk is a bit too heavy to be carried easily from desk to desk. If you need to navigate hallways or go to another office, you’d need a co-worker’s help or a dolly or cart.

2 of 5 possible Portability points

Noise (5% of Ergonomics score)

This criterion is normally concerned with how well the noise of electrical motors and other moving components in height adjustable desks is managed. The Varidesk’s mechanical moving parts make no sound as you adjust the height, but they do make a fairly loud noise as they click into place.

4 of 5 possible Noise points

Safety (5% of Ergonomics score)

The Varidesk poses few, if any, safety hazards. We didn’t have any problems as we evaluated the Varidesk, but we have read reports of cords and cables getting caught in the lifting mechanism.

4 of 5 possible Safety points

Ergonomics score 24.85/35 (71%)

Warranty (5% of total score)

A good way to gauge a manufacturer’s confidence in the durability of their products is by the length of the warranty they offer.

The Varidesk comes with a one-year warranty.

We award warranty points for standing desks based on this scale:

  • less than 1 year = 0 points
  • 1-2 yrs = 1 points
  • 3-4 yrs = 2 points
  • 5-7 yrs = 3 points
  • 8-10 yrs = 4 points
  • 10+ yrs = 4.5-5 points

Warranty score 1/5 (20%)

Customer Service (5% of total score)

We didn’t have any need to contact Varidesk, so they get the mid-range starting points.

Customer Service score 3/5 (60%)

Overall Rating: 76%

We compute the overall rating by adding up the number of total points earned and dividing by the total possible points (which, to simplify the math, is always 100 for any one product category) and then rounding to the nearest whole digit. The rating is expressed as a percentage, but don’t automatically assign a corresponding letter grade based on that percent. The Varidesk’s raw score of 76 is fairly low, but bear in mind that we are comparing it to highly engineered desks that cost twice as much or more. If you are stuck with your old sitting-height desk but want to add an adjustable-height work surface to it, the Varidesk can work great for you. We will never give even the highest-rated product in a category a 100%, mainly because we’ll always leave room in each criterion in our rating system for the possibility of superior products emerging in the future.

Price Details

Basic Deluxe
Model/Price Pro 30″ $375 Pro 48″ $495
Main Work Surface 30″ wide x 24″ deep 48″ wide x 24″ deep
Footprint 36″ wide x 26 3/4″ deep 48″ wide x 26 3/4″ deep
Monitor Mounts On main surface main surface
Max. No. of Monitors 1 2 (or 1 monitor and your laptop)
Keyboard Tray 30″ wide x 6 1/4 to 12 3/4″ deep; available only in sitting position 48″ wide x 6 1/4 to 12 3/4″ deep; available only in sitting position
Extras n/a $0 n/a $0
Shipping ground $0 ground $0
TOTAL Basic $375 Deluxe $495

Features

  • switch from sitting to standing in 3 seconds
  • comes out of the box fully assembled
  • patented, spring-assisted lift mechanism allows you to raise and lower desktop almost effortlessly

Specs

Specifications

Desk height adjustment:
Spring-Assisted

Lowest desk height:
5 inches

Tallest desk height:
15.5 inches

Desk height range:
10.5

Desk height measured from:
desktop

Lifting Capacity:
Pro 30 & Pro 36: 35 lbs; Pro 48: 45 lbs pounds

Shipping

Shipping & Delivery

Default assumption is shipping from/to the continental U.S. Shipping to Alaska and Hawaii or to Canada and other countries will cost more.

Shipping Options

  • Ground to continental U.S.
  • Alaska and Hawaii

Delivery & Assembly Options

  • Inside delivery

Warranty

Warranty

Warranty:
1 years

Return Policy

"Thanks to our risk free 30-day guarantee, you may return any VARIDESK product for any reason within 30 days of the date of purchase. Simply call us and we will issue an RMA#. We’ll even cover your return shipping costs - all we ask is that you return the item to us in its original shipping box. If you do not have the original packaging, you may purchase a box from us. Please call Customer Service for more details. For US Customers: Your money will be refunded in full to your credit card within 2-3 business days upon return receipt of your VARIDESK product. For Australia Customers: Your money will be refunded in full to your credit card within 2-3 business days or within 5-7 days if you paid via EFT/ACH/Wire Transfer upon return receipt of your VARIDESK product. For EU Customers: Your money will be refunded in full to your credit card within 2-3 business days or within 5-7 days if you paid via EFT/ACH/Wire Transfer upon return receipt of your VARIDESK product."

Reviews

Varidesk Pro User Reviews

Amazon reviews

Reviews on manufacturer's website
(reviews may be all the way at the bottom of the page)

Notes on pricing info above: “Basic” pricing is for the entry-level desk add-on in this brand line. “Deluxe” pricing is for the model in the line with the largest work surface available, with mounting for two monitors (if available), and with other available add-ons. Both prices assume that the desk is being shipped to an address in the continental U.S.

Updates and Corrections

All basic product information (features, pricing, specifications, etc.) on this page is from the desk information page on the manufacturer’s website or in its product documentation, or from correspondence with the manufacturer or an authorized representative. We do our best to keep the information on this page up to date. If you see any errors or omissions, please let us know and we’ll correct the information as soon as possible.

Page last updated: August 9, 2016

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