How to choose the right standing desk

Knead - KD01 Standing Desk with Smart Paddle Controller

Great news: if you're looking for a standing desk, then you're on the right path to feeling great while you work. A standing desk is half of the equation to an ergonomic setup, but choosing the right one can be a bit tough. What do you look for? Are they all the same? What should you be careful about? We're here to help you find the answers to these. 


Starting off, you want to buy a desk that has dual motors. Dual motors will make sure your desk goes up and down consistently and last over time. Typically, single motors will have a lower weight capacity (how much weight can it lift), and are typically slower in adjustment speed (how fast it can lift). While single motors are slightly cheaper, you may be better off with a dual motor setup so that your desk can last longer and scale up to your needs in the future. 

Weight capacity

This one is really tricky. A lot of desk manufacturers don't paint the right picture in the capabilities of their desk. For example, one manufacturer here in the States claims their desk can lift 300lbs, which shocked us at Knead. But after doing some digging on their site, their fine print says that while it can lift 300lbs, it's actually not recommended to do so. This isn't honest marketing. What to look out for and ask your manufacturer is how much weight is the frame rated to lift, and how heavy are their tops are. This way, you have clear information on what the capacity of the desk you're buying is. In general, look for anything in the 200-300lb range, and that is plenty enough. 

Dual-stage leg, or Single-stage leg? (2 or 3 columns)

Generally, a leg with more stages is more stable and consistent, especially as it goes up and down. Lower priced desks will have a single-stage leg (2 columns), while more premium ones will have a dual-stage leg (3 columns). Why is it more stable? There's more material overlapping. In addition to the stability and consistency, dual-stage legs also offer much more range on both the top end and the low end. Make sure you get a desk that has enough range for you and those using it. 

Controller type 

Controllers are pretty standard. Just make sure they're easy and intuitive to use. Lots of buttons or lots of memory settings aren't pressed often, so get one that works intuitively. 

Solid wood top or laminate top? 

Laminate tops are made of a wood or wood-like core, and then finished with a beautiful finish that's made of melamine typically. For every day use, laminate tops are excellent, especially if they're made of a solid high density material like MDF (medium density fiberboard). Laminates are easy to clean and have very low maintenance. Solid woods are beautiful but are a bit tricky to handle. Depending on the finish, it could be porous (wood is porous) and prone to color fastness to light (sun bleaching). They require more care to keep beautiful over time.

What size desk? 

This one is up to you. Luckily, some desks are telescopic, meaning that the frame can adjust left and right freely. In the future, if you thought your 48" width desk was too small, you can change it to a 60" width desk by replacing the top only. Typically, 48" wide x 30" deep is a very common desk size that will support your work and all your devices (monitor, laptop, keyboard, mouse, papers, personal items, etc). 

Thinking about buying a height adjustable desk? Knead's KD01 height adjustable desk is a premium height adjustable desk with great value. Check it out here

Need help choosing the right desk? Chat with our experts or send us an email at,

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