Eureka i1 Standing Desk Review
The first standing desk to ship in one box, the Eureka i1 is actually brimming with features for a desk that costs only $399. It's single size option, limited color options, limited height adjustment range and low lifting capacity will not be for everyone, but if you're looking for a budget standing desk you won't have to replace within a year of buying it, this is a solid product backed by a solid engineering-focused company.
Average-height users, not a lot of items weighing down the desktop. Not recommended for use with office treadmills or for users who stand more than 6' tall.
Included for lower 48 states.
Electric, single stage (two segment) legs
1.25 inches per second
Full digital readout with precision to 1/10th inch. Four programmable height presets. Anti-collision and anti-trip (G-Force) sensing.
Only one size: 47.25" wide by 23.6" deep
Black base only
Desktops in simple black or cherry wood grain laminate
60W in motion
<2W standby power
Relative to other products in this price range the 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.
Best Standing Desk Under $400?
Up until now all the stand-up desks we’ve reviewed in the sub-$400 price range have been rather disappointing, so we were very pleased to discover that this desk, sometimes sold as the plainly-named “Electronic Height Adjustable Desk,” fromEureka is a standout contender. Our expert review staff was blown away by its unassuming presence and quality features for the dollar. In fact, this Eureka i1 standing desk won the #1 recommendation in our Top Stand Up Desks Under $400 round-up.
We weren’t expecting spectacular features at $399, but someone who buys this desk will feel like they got what they paid for, and not likely experience buyer’s remorse. We can’t say the same for products like the Autonomous SmartDesk, StandDesk Pro or IKEA Bekant, which have all suffered terribly from reliability issues and receive very poor customer ratings.
We’ve been working through lab testing all of the products manufactured by Eureka Ergonomics and overall have been blown away by the quality they offer at each price level. Unlike other made-in-China standing desks and standing desk converters, Eureka’s product quality is not an embarrassment, it’s a brownie point.
There are two reasons for this. The first is that when Eureka designs a new product, they also design an advanced robotic manufacturing line to produce it, so the welds are perfect and the tolerances are tight.
The second reason is that they make every major component in-house, from the legs and electronics to the desktop and packaging. By cutting out third party component manufacturers and being completely vertically integrated under one roof (one 850,000 sq ft factory the size of an Amazon fulfillment center!), Eureka has managed to both inject quality and extract cost from their products.
Arrives All in One Box
You don’t even have to open the box to see the first innovation in Eureka’s standing desk. Where every other desk arrives in two or three boxes, Eureka has cleverly packed the entire desk into one manageable and surprisingly lightweight box. The internal packaging is state of the art, meaning FedEx or UPS won’t damage the desk on its way to your front door. In fact, by packaging everything together in one box, the desktop is far more likely to survive transit than when shipped in a large flat carton on its own like every other desk in this budget category. (Premium desks are usually shipped on a pallet by freight, not via parcel carrier, to minimize transit damage.)
The Trade-off: Limited Choices
Like the Eureka E-60 standing desk and E-60 L-shaped standing desk that we’ve also reviewed, the choices are slim when it comes to sizes and colors. This desk comes in one and only one size, at least today, and that’s 47.25″ × 23.6″, indeed one of the most popular sizes for a budget desk. And it also comes in only two color schemes, both with a black base. You have your choice of either cherry or plain black laminate.
The desktop itself is pretty basic high-pressure laminate on an MDF core, which is what you’d expect at this price point. Still better than powder coat paint, which a lot of desk manufacturers use to cut costs even further, but not as nice as 3D-lamination or solid wood like you’ll find on some higher-end desks.
In terms of stability, transit speed, sound signature, and reliability the Eureka i1 Standing Desk delivers on what you’d expect for $399—which we wish we could say about the other contenders in the sub-$400 class. But we were surprised by how many advanced features were included in the controller. It is a fully programmable hand set with a white digital readout accurate to one-tenth of an inch and offering four height preset buttons.
But the controller also features anti-collision and anti-tilt sensing, as well as dampened stop-start acceleration. These are extraordinary features not commonly found in standing desks in this price tier. A host of electronic measures ensure that you won’t accidentally burn out the motors or overheat the electronics. And that’s part of the story behind how Eureka is able to confidently offer a five year warranty on a $399 desk. Few desks in this price range have such niceties. Some are even single motor, versus the dual precision motors used in the i1.
Overload protection circuitry is important because, like the IKEA Bekant and Idasen standing desks, the load capacity on the i1 is only 154 lbs. As we point out in our primer on Do Weight Ratings on Electric Desks Really Matter? the user should always be mindful that weight ratings are established using perfectly centered weights balanced along where the crossbar runs underneath the desktop—so any off-balance weights like monitors attached to an edge-clamped monitor arm—will induce side loading on the lifting actuators. This has the same effect as adding a lot more weight, and causes weaker desks to burn out their motors or controllers prematurely.
Given the small size of the desk and its budget category, we imagine most people will be using it with a laptop and not a ton of other heavy items atop the desk. Judging by the quality of construction of the lifting columns (linear actuators), we won’t put too much of a caveat on the desk’s true lift capacity as we must on the other desks in this price bracket.
What we will caveat, however, is the limited height range of this single-stage base. With a bottom end of only 28.6″ you’re not going to be able to put casters on this desk or use it comfortably if you’re very short. And with a top-end height of only 45.8″, anyone over 6′ tall is going to be using the desk at its least stable height, with the leg segments having little overlap at the ends of the tubes.
By the same token, we do want to make clear that this entire desk, including desktop, weighs about 66 lbs—just more than half of what a similarly-sized, premium American-made standing desk like the iMovR Lander weighs. But for only $399 the Eureka desk’s value is unquestionable. For this kind of money you can’t be expecting a lot of steel, pre-assembly, or Bluetooth and smartphone apps to control your desk.
Putting together the Eureka i1 Standing Desk was a pretty decent experience for a DIY base, at least compared to the other sub-$400 desks. In contrast to the 48 bolts and screws that you have to insert to build an Autonomous SmartDesk II, the i1’s installation is more straightforward, quick and frustration free. The documentation could use a little bit of English text to help clarify what the two cartoon characters are showing you to do in each step (and it does take two people to assemble the desk efficiently).
If you’ve read our other reviews of standing desks under $400 then you know we’ve been repeatedly disappointed with what has come out of China and what IKEA has offered. Testing the i1 Standing Desk was a very different experience. You get a lot of desk for the money, with reliable components and sufficient tech features to make it believable that it will last at least as long as its five year warranty.
We can’t say the same of its contemporaries, and hundreds of negative online customer reviews of the Autonomous, Bekant, et al, back that up. Even on IKEA.com, the Bekant had a 1.8-star review from customers the last time we checked. The value of the Eureka desk is impressive, and we look forward to more size and color options in the future.