iMovR Lander Lite Standing Desk Review
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 of 52 colors of Surf(x) 3D-laminated or solid wood desktops are accessible to a lot more users at this great price point.
Starting at $799 with 3D laminated desktop
Starting at $1,299 with solid wood desktop
Prices include free shipping in the Lower 48 states. iMovR desks are extraordinarily well-packed and shipped by freight to avoid the damage that is common with parcel shipping.
Ten years on the base (all electrical and mechanical) and five years on both the 3D-laminated and solid-wood desktops
Precision dual-motor components from Linak
1.6 inches per second
"DPG Style" height control paddle with Bluetooth sync to free smartphone app
All tops are 30" deep and 0.75" thick, fully ergo-contoured.
Available in widths of 41”, 47”, 53”, 59”, 65”, 71”
Single-Stage Base: 27.35”
Dual-Stage "XT" Base: 24"
6" leg extension kit option added to dual-stage base makes the minimum height 30"
Single-Stage Base: 47.5"
Dual-Stage "XT" Base: 50"
6" leg extension kit option added to dual-stage base makes the maximum height 56"
Built to the ANSI/BIFMA X5.5-2014 Standard - will be ANSI/BIFMA Certified in Sept 2019 according to iMovR.
90% factory pre-assembled, takes eight minutes to put together with only one (provided) tool, and therefore does not entail an "IKEA project" to put together like other standing desks. (Corporate buyers will love this as well since professional installers are not required to assemble any Lander line desk.) Same made-in-USA quality as the original Lander, with same ten year bumper-to-bumper warranty on the base and five year warranty on the tops. Built-in health coach reminders result in at least twice as much use at standing height, according to studies. Controlled by the same smartphone app as the original Lander, via Bluetooth link to the sleek and intuitive "DPG style" height control paddle. Plethora of 52 color choices in both Surf(x) 3D-laminate and solid wood species mean just as many desktop options as with the original Lander.
Because of the thinner tops you can't get the SteadyType option on this model (iMovR's patented, built-in ergonomic keyboard tray) but the tops are still pre-drilled for their trackless under-desk keyboard tray. L-desk option will not be available in the Lite model. The slimmer "DPG style" height control paddle on the Lite desk doesn't have the multi-color hi-res display we've come to love on the original Lander but you can access all the same features through the smartphone app over the Bluetooth link.
Lander Desk - The Sequel
When iMovR first introduced the Lander Desk in April, 2018 it stopped the presses, upending the long-standing assumption that a height-adjustable ergonomic desk will never be anything more than just a “dumb” piece of furniture with electric motors (if you’ll pardon our pun). As we wrote in our review at the time, the Lander’s debut represented a revolution in sit-stand smartdesk design, not just a another small evolution.
We are not alone in our opinion that the Lander is the finest standing desk made today. Several other publications like USAToday’s Reviewed.com and ThinkComputers ranked the Lander the best desk they’ve ever tested.
Among a long list of firsts, the Lander was the first, and is still the only standing desk that arrives factory pre-assembled, coming together in just minutes after unboxing, with no tools required. All other standing desks (with the exception of this new Lander Lite) can still be fairly described as “IKEA projects” in contrast.
A made-in-USA desk with extraordinary stability, strength, and technological prowess—such as its Bluetooth-enabled height control paddle with smartphone app, advanced anti-collision detection, and of course iMovR’s signature Surf(x) 3D-laminated surfaces—the Lander took the market by storm and redefined the premium standing desk category overnight.
Soon after its introduction iMovR also released an ultra-premium version of the Lander with 36 different stain and species combos of natural solid wood, this time redefining “the nicest standing desk you can buy.” (See our primer on Comparing the Best Desk Tops for Standing Desks.)
And a few months after that iMovR introduced the most technologically-sophisticated L-shaped standing desk we’ve ever seen—in hundreds of size and color combos. While obviously more complex than a 2-legged desk, the Lander L-desk can assembled by just one person in about 8 minutes—using only a screwdriver. That’s a remarkable design achievement compared to the typical hour+, 2-man installation process for a conventional electric L-desk.
And all that’s great if you’ve got the coin and you’re looking for the very best of the best in a standing desk, but what about those who aren’t in a position to lay out upwards of a thousand dollars yet still yearn for the technological and aesthetic sophistication, ease of assembly and American-made quality of the Lander Desk?
If the original Lander was the Tesla Model S, the new Lander Lite is the everyman’s Tesla Model 3. It’s still super cool, cutting edge technology but at a much more affordable price point that makes it accessible to a much broader audience.
In this review we’ll first take a deep dive into the differences between the original Lander and the new Lite model, and see how the features, quality and overall value compare between the two.
Same Lander Desk DNA, Just 'Lighter'
As the name implies, the Lander Lite shares all its technological roots with the original model, just to a lesser magnitude. Everything about the Lite is indeed lighter, including its lift capacity, desktop thickness, center of gravity (lighter feet) and, of course, price tag. Let’s break it down:
The Lander Lite’s state-of-the-art, precision engineered, Linak lifting columns are robotically manufactured in the same Kentucky factory as those on the Lander, but are powered to lift only 225 lbs instead of 360 lbs. That’s still plenty of brawn for the vast majority of users, who don’t have more than the usual complement of desktop computer equipment or a thick natural hickory desktop to elevate.
While the Lander only comes in a "dual-stage" (3-segment leg) configuration, the Lite also comes in a more budget-friendly "single-stage" (2-segment leg) version—for those users who are of middling height and not concerned with the extreme bottom end and top end height reaches of the desk. While the dual-stage legs will give you a reach of 24”-50”, the single-stage legs will shorten that range to 27.35”-47.5” (top included), but cost $75 less.
The good news for the vertically-challenged among us is that both the Lander and the Lander Lite can be raised up an additional 6” with iMovR’s leg extension kit, particularly helpful for those users who might add an office treadmill in the future. Attaching these extensions to the dual-stage Lander Lite will endow it with an astounding 30"-56" height adjustment range.
With most dual-motor standing desks there is a controller box that sits under the desktop, to which the motors and user handset are connected. For cost savings the Lander Lite has the controller integrated into the “master” leg, driving its own motor at the same time as one in the "slave" leg. There’s no real downside to this unless you’re planning on converting your desk to a 3-legged L-desk at some point in the future. One of the unique features of the original Lander desk is that it’s the only standing desk on the market that can be field upgraded to a 3-legged L-shaped desk, but with the integrated controller design this isn’t going to be a future option on the Lander Lite.
Otherwise the lifting columns used in the Lander Lite are just as impressively fast (1.6 inches-per-second) and just as impressively quiet as the heavier-duty original. While the frame brackets and crossbar are the same on both desks the legs are positioned in a “T-leg” configuration on the Lander Lite, while the original desk is configured with a cantilevered “C-leg.” This makes sense given the overall “lightness” of the Lander Lite. As we discuss in detail in our primer on What Makes Some Standing Desks Shakier than Others?, the more weight you’re going to lift, the more you’re going to want a C-leg configuration to minimize side-loading on your lifting columns since most users distribute most of their equipment weight on the back half of their desktops (PCs, monitors, printers, etc.)
The last difference in the construction of the underframe is the more basic feet on the Lander Lite, which weigh one-fourth as much and aren’t as nicely designed (in our aesthetic opinion) as the supremely beefy ones on the original Lander. Again, for most user’s desk setups this is not going to be a very noticeable difference but the heavier your desktop, the wider and deeper it’s going to be, and the more stuff you plan to put on top of it, the more you’re going to want to spring the extra $250 for the more muscular, heavy (and thus and more stable) original Lander Desk.
The final difference in the bases is that the Lander is available in black, silver and white, while the Lander Lite, at least at the moment, is only being offered in black and silver except for large special orders. Since white is by far the least popular base color in the US this is nothing to lament over. Between the base options, desktop colors and desktop size options the Lander Lite still comes in a mind-boggling 1,248 unique combinations that you can personalize to fit most any conceivable office space. For bulk orders iMovR does offer a near-infinite number of custom colors for both the bases and the tops, in case you want to have all your employees' desks match the official company colors. They can even robotically etch your company's logo into the desktops before lamination.
The Desktop Options
Like all iMovR Desks, the original Lander and the new Lander Lite are completely customizable with a vast array of size and color choices, then produced on-demand (“Dell style”) and shipped out within one week of order. The ergo-contoured, 3D laminated surfaces give the desk the look of natural hardwood and are hermetically-sealed—even all the way through the grommet holes—ensuring it will look great and perform great for many years to come. Go ahead and spill your coffee into the grommet hole—unlike most every other desktop you can buy this won’t destroy the wood core of the top. The Lander Lite comes in the same 16 standard 3D-laminate colors as iMovR’s other desk and table products. (Worth noting that we’ve left one of iMovR’s 3D laminated tops outside our lab in Seattle's winter rain and summer sun for three years, and it still hasn’t shown any signs of water damage, warping or discoloration!)
Recently, iMovR added the option of solid wood tops with 36 stunning species and stain combinations to their Lander Desk offering. It doesn't get any finer in the standing desk arena than these new natural wood tops, precision hand-crafted in Michigan from regionally-grown sustainable forests in a seven-step process using environmentally-responsible, honest materials.
We're excited to see that the "lighter" real wood options on the Lander Lite are significantly more affordable than the full-thickness tops offered with the original, again making this premium option more affordable for a lot more people. Since so much of the cost of these solid wood slabs comes down to the raw wood stock itself and the labor-intensive ergo-edge contouring process, the way iMovR was able to reduce the cost of these tops for the Lander Lite offering is by using a 0.75"-thick stock rather than the 1.25" thickness of the tops offered with the Lander, and carving only a 1/4" radius edge contour versus 3/4". There are otherwise no differences in production method between the Lander's and Lander Lite's natural wood tops. These are categorically the highest-quality, most beautiful desktops we've seen yet from any standing desk maker.
The significant differences between iMovR's unique desktop offerings and the commodity HPL (high-pressure laminates) used by just about every other desk maker is something we've written a lot about, and well worth a scan for the discriminating buyer. For a deeper dive on how desktops for standing desks are made be sure to check out our primers on The Ultimate Guide to Desk Top Materials for Standing Desks and Comparing All Real Wood Standing Desk Options.
In terms of desktop sizes both versions of the Lander come with 30”-deep desktops (iMovR offers their Energize Compact for those seeking a 24”-deep solution). But in terms of desktop width, where the Lander has options from 41” all the way up to 83” in 6-inch increments, the Lander Lite is not available in the two largest sizes of 77” and 83”, so 30”x71” is the maximum dimension offered in the Lite desk.
Because iMovR’s patented, built-in SteadyType Ergonomic Keyboard Tray requires the thicker Select top this option is only available on the original Lander.
The Height Control Paddle
The entire Lander line utilizes Linak “DPG style” handsets, which are different from the old-school button-style handsets you’ll commonly find on standing desks. These handsets have an iPhone-esque ease of use… just tap the paddle up or down to get the desk to move in that direction. It’ll automatically stop at the next pre-programmed height preference.
Most anything you can do through the recessed buttons on the paddle you can also do through the downloadable smartphone app, and more, so even though the handset on the Lite is a little smaller and has fewer hardware features than the one on the original Lander, most of them are still available to you if you use your smartphone to program and control your desk.
On the original Lander there are four programmable height favorites, while on the Lander Lite there are only two storable in memory. Which is still perfect for storing your “sit” and “stand” height presets. For desks that are going to be shared between multiple users this is still a non-issue since each user would record their height favorites in their own phone app. Whenever they step up to a Lander or Lander Lite desk and sync-up to it over Bluetooth the desk will automatically re-acquire their personalized settings from the profile on their phone.
There’s still a built-in health coach, which will remind you to stand at intervals that you set to your own preferences. Push notification to your smartphone works the same way on both desks, but the original Lander also has a really nice multi-colored, high resolution display, and will unobtrusively flash your coach’s color coded stand up reminders on the paddle (the longer you ignore your own reminder settings, the “angrier” the colors get). On the Lander Lite’s DPG controller this indicator is a simple red diode that flashes when it’s time to change positions. There are no readouts for desk height or coach signals on the Lite’s height paddle.
Not sure how meaningful it is to have a built-in health coach? The data is in, and it may surprise you. Read this recent study in which users with a DPG-equipped standing desk increased their standing time by 117%.
The Lander is still the only desk that you can put together in two minutes with absolutely no tools. And the Lander Lite is the same with one exception. Because pre-assembling the feet to the legs requires a much larger box and therefore more embedded shipping costs the Lander Lite leaves this one assembly step for the customer to perform, in the name of cost reduction. Using the supplied Allen wrench it will take you only a few extra minutes to attach the feet to the legs, inserting a total of eight small bolts. That's the only part of the assembly that requires a tool.
See the Lander’s assembly video to see what the rest of the steps are like, which boil down to inserting the two legs into their receiving brackets on the underside of the desktop, attaching the securing clamps, and connecting the cable pigtails to each leg. The height adjustment paddle is factory installed but you can always move it to the other side of your desk if you prefer—there are already pre-drilled holes there, as there are for iMovR’s optional Trackless Ergonomic Keyboard Tray.
Like all iMovR desks, both the Lander and Lander Lite are made-to-order in a highly-automated process, shipping out of Grand Rapids, Michigan in one week from order. Bulk orders of 50 or more desks may take longer.
Part of the premium desk experience is the extraordinary quality of packaging that iMovR uses to decrease the chance of damage in transit. There’s nothing more disappointing than waiting for your desk to arrive only to find it was busted enroute and then having to wait for a replacement. For this reason iMovR ships most of their desks by freight, not parcel, to minimize this common problem when buying standing desks online.
While both the Lander and it’s new Lite version are engineered to meet ANSI/BIFMA X5.5-2014 standards for commercial furniture, only the Lander is currently certified by an independent testing laboratory. iMovR says it is currently have the Lander Lite independently tested and expects to have its ANSI/BIFMA certificate by September, 2019.
Learn all about the subject with our primer on ANSI/BIFMA Certification Standards for Sit-Stand Desks and Treadmill Desks
How to Choose Between the Original Lander and the new Lander Lite
If you’ve got the money and you just want the very best there’s no question the Lander is the king of the active office workstations. It’s got more power, weight and stability for larger loads and larger sized desks, including L-shaped desks. The original Lander is still the go-to model for treadmill desks where the enhanced stability, larger desk sizes (for sit-stand-walk side-by-side workstations) and the option of built-in SteadyType® make it a no-brainer. Prices start $250 higher than the Lander Lite.
On the other hand, if you want the sexy technology, exceptional made-in-USA quality and reliability, ease of installation and ten year warranty but are on a tighter budget the Lander Lite will do you just fine in the vast majority of cases. iMovR expects it to be far more popular than its flagship original Lander desk, just like Elon Musk called it with the Model 3’s becoming vastly more popular than the groundbreaking, but pricey Model S. Prices start at $799 for the smallest Lander Lite desk.
This table sums up the differences between the two:
|Original Lander||Lander Lite|
|Warranty||10-Year bumper-to-bumper||10-Year bumper-to-bumper|
|Lifting Columns||Cantilevered “C-leg” configuration with dual-stage lifting columns (3-segment legs)||Simple “T-leg” configuration with option of either single-stage or dual-stage legs|
|Lift Capacity||360 lbs||225 lbs|
|Transit Speed||1.6” per second||1.6” per second|
|Feet||Heaviest you’ll find on any standing desk, offering superb stability (13.6 lbs, 28.5”)||Substantially lighter, slim-line feet (3.6 lbs, 28”)|
|DPG Controller||DPG1C (4 memories, multi-color hi-res display, LED light strip for coaching signals)||DPG1M (2 memories, LED diode for standing reminder)|
|Degree of Pre-assembly||No tools required to Install the pre-assembled legs into the pre-assembled desktop. Comes together in just a few minutes.||User also has to affix the feet to the legs using supplied Allen wrench, adding a few minutes to the installation.|
|L-desk option||Lander L-desk offered, and any existing Lander 2-legged desk can also be upgraded to an L-desk configuration||None planned|
|Warranty||5 Years on all iMovR desktops, including 3D laminate and solid wood||5 Years on all iMovR desktops, including 3D laminate and solid wood|
|3D-laminated Desktops (30”-deep)||Widths: 41”, 47”, 53”, 59”, 65”, 71”, 77”, 83”
1.125" thickness (“Select”)
Steel crossbar added on 47” and wider tops
|Widths: 41”, 47”, 53”, 59”, 65”, 71
0.75” thickness (“Slim”)
Steel crossbar added on 59” and wider tops
|Solid Wood Desktops (30”-deep)||Widths: 41”, 47”, 53”, 59”, 65”, 71”, 77”, 83”
1.25" thickness (“Select”)
Steel crossbar added on 47” and wider tops
|Widths: 41”, 47”, 53”, 59”, 65”, 71
0.75” thickness (“Slim”)
Steel crossbar added on 59” and wider tops
How the Lander Lite Compares to iMovR’s Freedom Line
The Lander Lite fits neatly in between iMovR’s budget-oriented Freedom desks—the Energize and Cascade—and the original Lander desk. Also made-in-America and featuring a 10-year warranty, the Freedom desks are every bit as reliable and versatile as the Landers, but they pack few frills. Assembly of a Freedom desk is DIY like any other standing desk, although the big parts are pre-assembled so they take about 1/3rd as much time to install as compared to a Jarvis or UpLift desk, for example.
See our detailed reviews of the Energize and Cascade to learn more, but note that the only difference between these two models is that the Cascade includes a built-in SteadyType keyboard tray. Prices for the Energize start at $638 and for the Cascade at $993.
While the Energize and Cascade desks are clearly positioned by iMovR as the least expensive American-made standing desks they are also the most versatile in terms of available desktop shapes and sizes, with over 7,000 custom combinations. Energize desks can be ordered in compact configurations with 24”-deep tops, and in 30” you can have your choices of Select (thick 1.125”) or Slim (thin 0.75”) tops in 3D-laminate. For corner denizens both models come in an array of creative shapes, see our reviews of the Energize Corner and Cascade Corner Standing Desk. If you want solid wood tops or true L-shaped desks, though, you’d have to steer over to the Lander line.
As noted above the Lander and (very shortly) the Lander Lite are ANSI/BIFMA X5.5-2014 certified, two of only three standing desk models available through e-commerce that are. The Freedom desks at present are not independently BIFMA certified, though they are built to the same X5.5 standard.
How the Lander Lite Compares to other non-iMovR Standing Desks
To really dig into this question we refer you to our complete round-up of Electric Standing Desk Reviews. There’s clearly a clumping of budget-sensitive standing desks in the $400-$700, within which iMovR’s Energize desk is the only product that isn’t made in China. And of course there’s a bevy of overpriced standing desks from the contract furniture giants like Steelcase and Herman Miller that are a bit yesteryear in technology.
When it comes to premium standing desks that you can actually buy online there are only a few, and you’ll find them listed in our round-up of Top American-Made Standing Desk Reviews. The Humanscale Float Table and UpDesk Commercial Grade desks are in this tier but just not very popular anymore.
This mid-tier territory between Asian-made commodity desks and contract furniture has really been the segment of the market that has been dominated by iMovR for the past few years. Candidly, it’s hard to compare sub-$700 standing desks made in China to any of the iMovR models without considering the differences between American-made and Asian-import standing desks. And when contract furniture can only generally be purchased by large companies buying in the hundreds or thousands of units it’s also difficult to compare these to the much more affordable and technologically-advanced units that you can only buy online these days.
On the subject of corporate buyers, one of the things that makes it hard to compare the Lander and Lander Lite to other desks is that every other brand requires significant installation effort, usually contracted out at significant expense and often delaying the date by which employees can actually start working at their new standup desks. With iMovR’s business model that’s usually two-three weeks from order, including custom quoting, production, delivery and installation, as compared to a typical 16-24 week cycle with contract furniture.
The new Lander Lite fills a gaping hole in the market today. It offers premium, American-made quality and advanced technology at a price just slightly higher than the Chinese-sourced, commodity-quality standing desk you’ll most commonly find online.
For that reason we believe the Lander Lite to become even more popular than the original Lander desk. For home office buyers it offers a broad array of size and color selections, and ease-of-installation for an affordable price.
But we also expect it to be a highly popular option with enterprise customers that would otherwise go to a contract furniture dealer for desks of this quality and durability. They stand to save time and money by eliminating the need for professional installation and by being able to buy at factory-direct prices instead of through dealers, who add little value when there’s no installation required. While the Lander has been popular with high-decor office spaces like law firms and financial services firms, the Lander Lite promises to better fit the budget of mainstream office furniture buyers.
Full disclosure: iMovR and WorkWhileWalking have mutual ownership interest. Learn More
iMovR ships most of its desks by freight, with very robust packaging, to prevent the kind of damage that is common when desks are shipped via parcel carrier.