Buyer's guide to computer desks

The origins of computer desks are back in the 80's when you had a big tube monitor and a grey box computer with lots of wires. Their design was always basic and to put it bluntly little changed in their design for 10 years. However, with the advent of laptops (now the preferred choice for a home computer), wireless keyboards, mice and the mass uptake of flat screen monitors a computer desk can now almost be any desk you like. We do recommend that it does still have at least one drawer for stationery essentials and usually enough depth to fit a monitor so that you are not sitting too close to it. Because almost any table cannot be a computer desk it has allowed lots of flexibility in design, size and shape.

Computer desks for offices

1. Look for quality and durability

2. Buy a range from a major company or supplier. You may have only 4 staff now but when you have 12 you want them to have all the same types of desk. A major supplier will stock the same lines for years.

3. Choose desks that look good together and that work in a number of different layouts.

4. Choose simple clean designs with an emphasis on practicality rather than design

5. By mid price, not the cheapest but definitely not the most expensive

6. Look at the major online suppliers like Euroffice and Viking as well as specialist furniture suppliers.

Computer desks for the home

1. Buy something that suits the room and fits well in it.

2. Buy a good design. While this is not traditionally the strong point of computer desks we are seeing many interesting new designs being launched. Always remember this is a piece of furniture for you house not just a computer desk.

3. Spend more not less – do not just buy the cheapest, or the only one they have in stock.

4. Look for one that can hide away wires and cables

Keep tidy

Once you have your computer desk, make sure you keep it tidy so it's easier for you to find things. Follow our tips for a mess free desk:

1. Storage - all those drawers are to keep stuff in them not on the top of your desk. Use them! If you're worried you will lose something in the drawers get also a drawer organiser and everything will have its won place in there.

2. Labels - get some labels so its easier to sort folders, chargers and anything else that comes to mind.

3. Wires - you've seen it - wires everywhere around desks and you often trip over them. To keep them out of your way use Velcro to bundle them up or command hooks to secure the wires aroudn the legs of your new computer desk.

The most important thing however, when choosing a computer desk is to properly measure the space where it must fit into. Just as important, you are going to be working at this desk, so you need a space big enough to house a reasonable size desk. If it is too small it will always feel cluttered and not a pleasant space to work.

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