Best Quick Install Standing Desks

September 20, 2021
  • Lab tested

Like most reviews sites, our editorial staff and laboratory testing expenses are partially offset by earning small commissions (at no cost to you) when you purchase something through those links. iMovR, ZipDesk and WorkWhileWalking have mutual ownership interest. Learn More

All the easiest desks for standing desk assembly

Not Quite Minute-Rice Assembly, But Pretty Darned Close

When it comes to the prospect of assembling a standing desk we find that our readers generally fall into two camps:

  1. People who love a good DIY project, have the proper tools, and wouldn’t dream of paying for someone else to assemble their desk, and
  2. Everyone else. Including people who dress nicely for work, who don’t have the patience or technical skills for an “IKEA project,” and those who don’t have the proper power tools to make the job go faster.

If you fall into Group 2, this article is for you. The rest of you dudes can go check out our DIY section and learn all about the best bases and desktops to use in constructing your ultimate standing desk.

Between all our expert staff reviewers we’ve assembled literally hundreds of standing desks in our evaluation labs over the past decade, so to parrot J. K. Simmons “we know a thing or two, because we’ve seen a thing or two” when it comes to how these mechanisms go together.

Out of all those desks there are only a handful that you can assemble in under 20 minutes, and fewer still that’ll assemble in less than 10. One assembles in just three minutes, remarkably using no tools whatsoever, not so much as an Allen key.

Considering Standing Desk Assembly is More Important Than Ever in a Post-Pandemic World

There has been extraordinary interest in this category of standing desks ever since Covid-19 chased the majority of the American office workers into their home office bunkers.

With companies like Google offering employees $1,000 towards furniture purchases for their home office, standing desk sales have been skyrocketing. After all, their employers were progressive enough to provide them with healthy ergonomic workstations at the office, why would they want to subject them to the pains of working at a kitchen counter or living room sofa? Not to mention the potential workmans comp claims for ergonomic injuries (that hasn’t gone away if the employee was directed to work from home).

No employer wants to saddle Janet, single mother of three, a cat and a dog with assembling a cheaply-made standing desk at home. Besides not having the patience, skills, floor space or proper tools to put it together, it is really not a good use of their time. And you can forget hiring a professional installer to go into her home with current social distancing rules.

We say “cheaply-made” because that’s how low-cost producers extract costs, by transferring assembly labor from the factory workers to the consumer. So, yes, a pre-assembled desk will cost a little more, reflecting the higher labor, packaging and shipping costs involved in pre-assembly, but for many people it’s going to be the best way to go.

There’s the Quick, the Quicker and the Quickest

This round-up review is broken down into three tiers:

  • Under 3 minutes
  • Under 10 minutes, and
  • Under 20 minutes

We do not rely on manufacturers’ claims of assembly time as they are often optimistic, and in some cases legitimately fraudulent claims. These times were obtained by actually constructing these desks in our test labs, following the manufacturers’ instructional documentation and/or videos.

Note that we do not include the amount of time it takes to remove all the components from their packaging. These times are clocked from the moment all the components are laid out to when the desk is initialized and ready for use.

The part that many people forget to consider is whether or not the quick-install desk they buy is also individually tested at the factory. Not all are, and those that aren’t represent the same installation risk as cheaper models that take longer to assemble. If anything goes wrong it’s going to be a huge hassle for the user to deal with getting replacement parts, even under warranty, and reverting back to the kitchen table until problems are resolved. We won’t hesitate to say that this is going to be more common with standing desks made in China versus domestic brands, because it’s just a statistical fact. For more information on warranties, be sure to read our primer on How to Compare Warranties on Standing Desks.

On to the round-up…

Standing Desks That Assemble in Under 3 Minutes

1. iMovR Lander Desk

Experts’ Rating: 5-Stars

The Lander is the #1-rated standing desk in the market today. It is the rare revolutionary—not simply evolutionary—standing desk. It’s entirely made in the USA, assembles in minutes without tools, and boasts a sleek height controller that syncs to your smartphone, among other distinctive technological advancements. Available in 22 healthcare-grade 3D laminate colors and 36 solid wood finishes.

Assembly Time: 3 Minutes. See assembly video.

Tools Required: None

Price: $1,049

Read our full review Buy on iMovR


Standing Desks That Assemble in Under 10 Minutes

1. iMovR Lander L-Desk

Experts’ Rating: 5-Stars

The many innovations in this new Lander L-Desk from iMovR have definitely redefined the category. While competitors merely added a third leg and a second, cross-grain desktop to their standard 2-legged desks, iMovR has redesigned the L-shaped desk from the ground up. In iMovR’s typical style they took a couple of years longer than other players to introduce their L-desk option, and now we know why. It will take as long for any competitor to catch up to where they’ve reset the bar. Available in 22 healthcare-grade 3D laminate colors and 36 solid wood finishes.

Assembly Time: 8 Minutes for 3D-laminate. 10 minutes for solid wood. See assembly video.

Tools Required: Philips screwdriver.

Price: $2,048

Read our full review Buy on iMovR


2. ZipDesk Standing Desk

Experts’ Rating: 5-Stars

Designed and built in the USA. Top-quality base technology and an industry-leading 10-year “top to bottom” warranty. Unique in the industry as the first “desk in a box” we’ve ever seen. And that means it can ship fast (even same-day through Amazon Prime in some markets) or even be picked up at a retail store. Plus it’s one of the fastest desks to set up, being almost completely factory pre-assembled. This is also a great desk to be able to break down just as easily, transport and set up again in your next office – maybe after you’re done working from home and want to go back to the corporate campus. ANSI/BIFMA and NEAT Certification are a solid indicator of the ZipDesk’s durable and reliable componentry and stable user experience, matching up with our lab-test results.

Assembly Time: 5 Minutes. See assembly video.

Tools Required: Allen key for attaching feet, included in the box.

Price: $694

Read our full review Buy on iMovR


3. iMovR Ensign's Standing Desk

Experts’ Rating: 5-Stars

Perfected ergonomics and designer furniture panache combined? This desk brings it all together like no other we’ve seen because it allows you to pick the configuration that best fits both your sense of style and your ergonomic needs at the same time. The Scandanavian-styled Baltic birch top, curved edge option and optional Fly Deck monitor stand together to form one of the most beautiful standing desks we’ve seen. Plus, it has the trusty Lander Lite base beneath it. It’s a desk that forces you to make very few compromises.

Assembly Time: 5 Minutes. See assembly video.

Tools Required: Allen key for attaching feet, included in the box.

Price: $1,449

Read our full review Buy on iMovR


4. iMovR Lander Lite Desk

Experts’ Rating: 4.5-Stars

iMovR has managed to take the industry’s #1-rated, premium-technology standing desk, the original Lander, keep 90% of the technology features and significantly lower the entry price with this new Lander Lite offering. Like the original, it’s made entirely in the USA from the highest quality materials and highest precision robotic manufacturing techniques, resulting in a superior value to the consumer. We predict it’ll vastly outsell the original Lander because now features like factory pre-assembly, Bluetooth-enabled height control paddle and smartphone app, built-in health coach, and the choice of22 healthcare-grade 3D laminate colors and 36 solid wood finishes are accessible to a lot more users at this great price point.

Assembly Time: 5 Minutes. See assembly video.

Tools Required: Allen key for attaching feet, included in the box.

Price: $799

Read our full review Buy on iMovR


5. iMovR Captain's Standing Desk

Experts’ Rating: 4.5-Stars

If you’re tired of the typical “two legs and a slab of wood” standing desk design, the Captain’s Desk is a breath of fresh air. Packaging that design with the technological features of the Lander Lite base makes for an exceptional desk. You get the warranty, assembly, stability, height range and quality you would expect from a premium, American-made iMovR desk, plus a stunning design and the strong Baltic birch desktop.

Assembly Time: 5 Minutes. See assembly video.

Tools Required: Allen key for attaching feet, included in the box.

Price: $1,999

Read our full review Buy on iMovR


6. Steelcase Solo Standing Desk

Experts’ Rating: 3-Stars

($3.5B+) Steelcase is the biggest brand in commercial office furniture but this new Solo standing desk is targeting the home office user, and the jury is still out on whether the company can eventually learn how to sell to and support the residential customer. The Solo desk aims to hit a $600-$700 price point with stripped-down basics and limited size and color offerings, but a much easier assembly process than their other desk lines that they’ve repositioned and repriced for the home office. Based on a new Linak base made in a new Thai factory, it circumvents the higher cost of American-made or Danish-made Linak bases while avoiding Chinese tariffs and quality issues. The desktop, however, is very basic, not of the highest quality, and at 55 dB it may be one of the noisiest electric frames out there.

Assembly Time: 10 minutes.

Tools Required: Screwdriver

Price: $599

Read our full review Buy on SteelcaseStore


Standing Desks That Assemble in Under 20 Minutes

1. iMovR Energize Desk

Experts’ Rating: 4.5-Stars

The iMovR Freedom™ standing desk line shines by offering what, up to this point, has been missing on the market – a quality American-made option priced competitively with popular standing desks built on commodity imported bases. The Energize is a twin in nearly every way to iMovR’s SteadyType™ equipped Cascade Standing Desk, but offers a flat-surfaced 3D-laminated tabletop, and even more sizing options than the Cascade, including a compact 24” depth and two options for tabletop thickness. Toss in the wide array of customizable options iMovR is known for (over 5,400 variants on the Freedom desk line alone), and the iMovR Energize takes the mantle for the “most configurable standing desk in the world.”

Assembly Time: 20 Minutes. See assembly video.

Tools Required: Power screwdriver recommended.

Price: $593

Read our full review Buy on iMovR


2. FlexiSpot Theodore Standing Desk

Experts’ Rating: 3.5-Stars

The FlexiSpot Theodore is very specifically designed for the person who wants a drawer in their standing desk, and doesn’t intend to install any ergonomic accessories like a keyboard tray or monitor arm. It’s minimalist in performance specs, easy to assemble, and if it matches your traditional office decor, it may be one of the best values out there.

Assembly Time: 15 minutes

Tools Required: Included allen key

Price: $499

Read our full review Buy on FlexiSpot


3. FlexiSpot Comhar Standing Desk

Experts’ Rating: 2.5-Stars

This desk is made for a laptop user who doesn’t have specific ergonomic needs like a keyboard tray or monitor arm. Options and weight capacity are minimal, and it, unfortunately, comes with a crossbar running between the legs right where your feet want to be. It’s a good value for those who don’t mind the drawbacks because of its price, easy assembly and built-in drawer and USB ports.

Assembly Time: 15 minutes

Tools Required: Included allen key

Price: $499

Read our full review Buy on FlexiSpot


4. Varidesk ProDesk 48 and ProDesk 60

Experts’ Rating: 3-Stars

The Varidesk ProDesk 60 Electric is simply not worth the cost. It may be a serviceable product, but that doesn’t mean it should cost as much as it does. Either save your money or look into premium alternatives—your shins will thank you.

Assembly Time: 20 minutes is more realistic than their claim of five.

Tools Required: Awkward t-handle Allen key and rubber mallet that come with the desk.

Price: $699

Read our full review Buy on Amazon



Completing Your Ergonomic Workstation

Acquiring the best standing desk for your decor, budget and performance requirements is Step One. But making it a true ergonomic workstation involves adding the appropriate accessories you’ll need to keep your body in a correct posture, and have a neat and tidy setup. Check out our comprehensive guides to monitor arms, keyboard trays, anti-fatigue mats, ergonomic seats, cable management kits, power management modules, foot rests and under-desk treadmills for both expert advice and lab-tested product reviews of options in each of these categories.

Looking For More Standing Desk Reviews?

L-Shaped Standing Desks

Top Rated Standing Desks

Made In USA Standing Desks

Quick-Ship Standing Desks

Reclaimed Wood Standing Desks

Solid Wood Standing Desks

Corner Standing Desks

Compact Standing Desks

Standing Desks Under $400

Standing Desks Under $800


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Standing Desks

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