The Best Stand Up Desks Under $400
Finding the Cheapest Standing Desk That Won’t Break on You
If you’re looking to get into a sit-stand desk on a budget, the good news is there are many options on the market to choose from. The bad news is that not all of them are of decent quality. This is where our lab tests really serve to separate the wheat from the chaff.
Our experts have lab tested dozens of sit-stand desks over the years (you can see all of them in our Best Sit-Stand Desk Reviews round-up). As we frequently get requests from readers for a short list of the best budget sit-stand desks to consider, we previously asked our editors to compile their top picks under $700. Now we’ve asked them to compile the best you can buy for under $400.
As part of assessing which sit-stand desk is best for you, we’d like to point out some other important articles on the subject, which we highly recommend any prospective desk buyer reads before they commit to one brand or model over another. Probably the most important is our primer on Why Some Sit-Stand Desks Shake More Than Others, since reasonable stability is going to be the main thing that will be hard to find in a desk under $400—in fact, only one model meets our experts’ standards in this price range.
Along with stability, any buyer should be concerned about manufacturing quality, ease-of-assembly, ease-of-use, customer support and warranty when buying a product of this complexity and cost. For more detailed criteria, see our article How We Conduct Standing Desk Reviews.
We have not included any manual sit-stand desks in this round-up because they represent less than 2% of the market at this point; the electric sit-stand desk has won the game, and at this point there are numerous electric desks that are less expensive and better than the few sit-stand crank desks still on the market.
It is also worth noting that there are now fewer options under $400 as a result of the new Chinese tariffs, so we’ve had to drop a few former contenders from the roster below. For example, the Stand Desk which found tremendous success as the first $400 standing desk on Kickstarter in 2014 now starts at $479.95 when configured bare bones.
As you might expect the cheapest standing desks most commonly emanate from China. Learn more about the differences in quality, durability and performance you can expect from Chinese-made Standing Desks versus Made-in-USA.
On to the reviews. To see the detailed reviews behind each of these abstracts just click on the link.
Experts’ Rating: 4-Star
Review Summary: Relative to other products in this price range the iMovR+Eureka i1 Standing Desk offers better reliability, durability, tech features and ease of assembly. Arrives in one box, unlike any other electric standing desk we’ve seen so far. Only one size, only two desktop color options. We’d love to see more options. In terms of overall value in a desk under $400 this Eureka Ergonomic desk sweeps the category. None of the disappointing shortcomings of other desks in this price range, a solid bargain for your money. Read our full review
Price: Starting at $399 + Free ShippingWhere to Buy
Experts’ Rating: 1-Star
Review Summary: There’s no such thing as a free lunch, and a $299 desk made from the lowest cost components in China is not worth the savings over a desk of reasonable quality and reliability. The SmartDesk 2 Home Edition with its single-motor, single-stage base is weak as a kitten and shaky even at relatively low heights, with a one year warranty that tells you all you need to know-it’s lucky to last a year. The more robust dual-motor, dual-stage Business Edition is a definite improvement worth the $100 but still shakes like a leaf at standing height, and isn’t built to last. For not a lot more money you could upgrade to a quality vendor with better real-world specs and better support. Read our full review
Price: Starting at $299 + $49 Shipping CostWhere to Buy
Experts’ Rating: 1-Star
Review Summary: Compared to the Home Edition, the more robust dual-motor, dual-stage Business Edition is a definite improvement worth the $100, but it still shakes like a leaf at standing height, and isn’t built to last. For not a lot more money you could upgrade to a quality vendor with better real-world specs and better support. Plus, with the unadvertised $49 shipping fee, this product doesn’t technically meet the price criteria “under-$400” for this round-up review. Read our full review
Price: Starting at $399 + $49 Shipping CostWhere to Buy
Experts’ Rating: 0.5-Star
Review Summary: While its new reduced $399 price might seem alluring at first glance, its poor specs and low weight make it a weak contender in its category. The Bekant might save you money now, but you may find yourself going through the hassle of replacing the desk in a few weeks or months, based on consistent user reviews. Even on IKEA’s own website curated customer reviews sum up to 1.8 stars, which says it all. Our opinion? You’re better off paying a bit more now for a quality desk that uses sturdier and more reliable components. Read our full review
Price: Starting at $399Where to Buy
If you’re looking for more standing desks, check out our Top Standing Desks article; there you’ll find all the standing desks we’ve reviewed compiled and ranked by value and performance.
Want Made-in-America? Here is a round-up of the best American-made standing desks.