Stand Up! With the Varidesk ProPlus 36 Electric

I needed more work space, so I recently added a fixed desk to my office’s standing desk and placed my iMac on it. The problem was, my computer was now only usable when seated. Thankfully, the Varidesk ProPlus 36 Electric arrived for review. It once again lets me work both seated and standing. It came fully assembled and ready to go.

GearDiary Stand Up! With the Varidesk ProPlus 36 Electric

Here’s what the company had to say about it:

With the ProPlus 36 Electric, you can go from sitting to standing with the touch of a button. This motorized adjustable desk converter raises your desk vertically up to 18.75”. The two-tier design easily accommodates dual-monitor setups and offers ample keyboard and mouse space with built-in cable management for the keyboard tray.

The $495 ProPlus 36 Electric arrived in a large box. The unit is heavy, and I was thrilled to discover that it ships ready to use.

GearDiary Stand Up! With the Varidesk ProPlus 36 Electric

After pulling the ProPlus 36 Electric out of the box, I placed it on the new fixed desk, plugged it in and was ready to go.

GearDiary Stand Up! With the Varidesk ProPlus 36 Electric

I have to admit that getting it on the desk was a bit of a struggle, this thing is big and heavy, but it was worth the few minutes of struggling considering how terrific this standing desk converter is.

You can get all the benefits of moving more at work with a standing-desk solution that’s easy to raise and just as easy to set up. Like all our desktop converters, there’s no assembly required – just plug it in and change the way you work in seconds. You can simply place your VARIDESK on your desk or table, add your monitors, keyboard and mouse, and you’re ready to get back to work.

The main surface offers plenty of space. I put my iMac on it and had a surprising amount of room left over for accessories. It can hold up to 40 pounds, and it is wide enough to handle a dual-monitor setup.

GearDiary Stand Up! With the Varidesk ProPlus 36 Electric

 

Also, the front of the ProPlus 36 Electric is a bit lower than the main computer/monitor surface. This lets you place your keyboard and mouse in a more ergonomic place whether you are using your computer seated or standing. This keyboard tray extends the entire length of the ProPlus 36 Electric giving you extra room got an iPad, a coaster for your coffee mug and more.

GearDiary Stand Up! With the Varidesk ProPlus 36 Electric

When using the ProPlus 36 Electric while seated the computer is a bit higher than it might otherwise be so, you will likely want to adjust your chair.

Also, the almost-vertical surface connecting the keyboard tray from the computer work surface has to capped holes, one on the left and the other on the right. Popping the summer cap out of either one reveals a cable pass-through so you can keep your desk surface free from cable clutter.

GearDiary Stand Up! With the Varidesk ProPlus 36 Electric

Between these two capped pass-through holes is a toggle for adjusting the ProPlus 36 Electric. Pressing the toggle up or down allows you to raise or lower the work surface. It doesn’t have presets the way my other sit-stand desks do but being able to raise and lower the work surface electronically is a lovely convenience.

The black color of the ProPlus 36 Electric means that, while it is large and substantial, it doesn’t call too much attention to itself. It’s significant weight, and quality build means you get a solid surface that won’t offer any “give” even when hammering away at your keyboard. And the convenience of an electric motor being able to raise or lower the desktop means you can switch positions countless times throughout the day without the need to think too much about it. I should, however, note that you have to hold the adjustment button down until it achieves the desired height and the process of raising or lowering the desktop is fairly slow.

GearDiary Stand Up! With the Varidesk ProPlus 36 Electric

And while I’ll be reviewing it separately, the fact that VARIDESK includes their $50 Power Hub with 2 USB and three AC outlets means you can have your new office setup wired and ready to go in minutes. At $495 for the VARIDESK ProPlus 36 Electric is rather steep but that steep price is made a bit easier to take by the fact that you get this awesome power hub with it.

Features:

  • A powerful, quiet motor makes it easy to go from sitting to standing
  • Adjustable to any height up to 18.75″
  • Small, LED lit display shows movement – ‘0’ is lowered, ‘100’ is the maximum height
  • Accessory tray
  • UL listed power supply
  • Fully assembled – just plug it in and work sitting or standing
  • Free shipping to the lower 48 states
  • Keyboard tray cable management
  • Includes Power Hub ($50 value)
  • Large lower keyboard and mouse tray with an upper deck that can accommodate a dual-monitor setup
  • Sits on top of existing desk
  • Sturdy and stable even when fully extended

As I noted at the start of this review. I already had a standing desk in my office. After using it for a year, it became clear to me that I needed additional workspace. I could have purchased a second standing desk but opted to get something a bit less expensive. When this new desk arrived, I moved my iMac to it and realized that I would no longer be able to work on my computer while standing. I wasn’t sure what I was going to do when, right in the middle of my deliberations, I was offered the ProPlus 36 Electric. Setting it up took mere seconds and the sit-stand surface it added to this new desk is as stable as if I had the computer directly on the desk’s surface. The motor makes adjusting my position as simple as pushing a button and even when the ProPlus 36 Electric is raised to its highest position it remains completely stable. The result is an even better, and more effective, desk setup than I ever imagined. I love it and highly recommend the ProPlus 36 Electric. Sure, you can save a few dollars and get the manual version of the ProPlus 36 for $395 but, if you can afford it, I suggest getting the electric version. It includes a $50 Power Hub, and I know you won’t be disappointed. Check it out here.

Source: Manufacturer supplied review sample of the Varidesk ProPlus 36 Electric

What I Like: Comes fully assembled; Includes Power Hub; Offers solid work surface at any height; Can be raised or lowered at the touch of a button; Has cable-management pass-throughs, Keyboard tray is lower and more ergonomic than it was on the same level of the main surface holding the computer

What Needs Improvement: No preset height adjustments; Raising and lowering the desktop requires holding the button down; Desktop moves up and down fairly slowly


About the Author

Dan Cohen
Having a father who was heavily involved in early laser and fiber-optical research, Dan grew up surrounded by technology and gadgets. Dan’s father brought home one of the very first video games when he was young and Dan remembers seeing a “pre-release” touchtone phone. (When he asked his father what the “#” and “*” buttons were his dad said, “Some day, far in the future, we’ll have some use for them.”) Technology seemed to be in Dan’s blood but at some point he took a different path and ended up in the clergy. His passion for technology and gadgets never left him. Dan is married to Raina Goldberg who is also an avid user of Apple products. They live in New Jersey with their golden doodle Nava.