Top Stand Up Desk Converters in Z-Lift Category

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Top Stand Up Desk Converters in Z-Lift Category

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Why are Z-Lifts some of the most popular standing desk converters in the market? Well for one, they’re all-around high performers:

  1. Z-Lifts have some of the most stable work surfaces for typing while standing, making them ideal options for those who type frequently at work (like programmers or writers),
  2. Z-Lifts usually come pre-assembled and are quick and easy to lift, which makes your transition to the sitting-standing routine easy, and
  3. Z-Lifts are middle-tier when it comes to price, balancing economy and quality.

One more note on Z-Lifts as a category. Keep in mind that the main reason why Z-Lifts are less expensive than other types (like Post & Base models) is that they do not come with monitor posts or monitor arms, which hold your monitor in the proper ergonomic position while you stand. Without one of these essential add-ons, you’ll likely strain your neck looking down at you monitor(s) while you stand. High quality monitor arms will add additional cost.

So are Z-Lifts the best all-around standing desk converter type? Probably. They have some of the best products represented, but that doesn’t guarantee any old Z-Lift is worthy of your purchase. Some are flubs, others are gems—our reviews below sort them out.

Table of Contents

Best Stand Up Desk Converters (Z-Lifts) by Ranking
Best Stand Up Desk Converters (Z-Lifts, Single Lift) by Ranking
Top 3 Factors to Consider When Buying Z-Lift Stand Up Desk Converters
Do You Use Dual Monitors?
How Noisy is the Unit?
Is It Ergonomically-sound?

Best Stand Up Desk Converters (Z-Lifts) by Ranking

Standing Desk Converter
(Z-Lift)
Pros/Cons Price

1. ZipLift+/HD


ZipLift+ Sit-Stand Desk ConverterRead Our Full Review

Pros

  • Three models— 35″, 42″, and 35″ Patriot
  • Extremely stable – rock steady
  • Tremendous height range adjustability, with infinite stops
  • Built-in adjustable-angle keyboard tray separates it from 95% of desktop risers on the market

Cons

  • Like all Z-Lifts, the work surface arcs towards the user as it is raised
Starting at $299


iMovR.com

Amazon.com

2. Ergotron WorkFit-T/TL


Ergotron WorkFit-T Sit-Stand Desk ConverterRead Our Full Review

Pros

  • Two models—35″ or 37.5″ wide work surfaces
  • Robust, stable work surface minimizes shaking
  • Optional monitor post kit provides better ergonomic screen viewing

Cons

  • Lever locking lift mechanism may make some noise during the lifting process
Starting at $436


SitLess.com

Amazon.com

3. Varidesk Pro Plus


Varidesk Pro PlusRead Our Full Review

Pros

  • Three models—30″, 36″, or 48″ wide work surfaces
  • Improves upon original Varidesk models by adding ‘lowered’ keyboard tray
  • Spacious work surfaces, excellent stability

Cons

  • Noisy when latching into its height settings
  • Arcing motion pushes users away from their desk when standing
Starting at $375


Varidesk.com

Amazon.com

4. Varidesk Exec


Varidesk ExecRead Our Full Review

Pros

  • One model for taller users, 23″ height range
  • 40″ wide work surface, shakier stability at taller heights

Cons

  • Noisy when latching into its height settings
  • Arcing motion pushes users away from their desk when standing
Starting at $550


Varidesk.com

Amazon.com

5. Varidesk Cube


Varidesk Cube Corner Sit-Stand ConverterRead Our Full Review

Pros

  • Built to fit inside the confines of a small corner desk
  • Two models, 36″ or 48″ wide work surfaces

Cons

  • Noisy when latching into its height settings
  • Arcing motion pushes users away from their desk when standing
Starting at $495


Varidesk.com

Amazon.com

6. Varidesk Pro


Varidesk Cube Corner Sit-Stand ConverterRead Our Full Review

Pros

  • Original Varidesk model, without ‘lowered’ keyboard tray
  • Three models, 30″, 36″, or 48″ wide work surfaces

Cons

  • Noisy when latching into its height settings
  • Arcing motion pushes users away from their desk when standing
Starting at $395


Varidesk.com

Amazon.com

7. Vivo


Vivo Standing Desk ConvertersRead Our Full Review

Pros

  • Low-cost, generously sized work surface
  • Air piston counterbalance, while not particularly powerful, works as advertised

Cons

  • Very difficult to adjust height, especially for shorter users
  • Assembly was quite difficult
  • Height settings do not lock in easily due to poor machining standards
Starting at $180


Amazon.com

8. Smugdesk


Smugdesk Stand Up Desk ConvertersRead Our Full Review

Pros

  • Low-cost, stable work surface
  • Keyboard tray is lowered for better ergonomic positioning

Cons

  • May be extremely difficult to lift to standing height when monitors are on top
  • Shipping damage is common
  • Short maximum height makes it unfit for taller users
Starting at $159.99


Amazon.com

9. House of Trade


House of Trade Standing Desk RisersRead Our Full Review

Pros

  • Low price point

Cons

  • Small keyboard tray and weak counterbalance may make day-to-day usage a bit of a struggle
  • Only five levels of height adjustment
  • Some assembly required
Starting at $168.99


Amazon.com

10. Lorell


Lorell Sit-to-Stand Monitor RisersRead Our Full Review

Pros

  • Two different-sized models

Cons

  • Tedious (and potentially dangerous) lifting process for Standard version
  • Poor quality laminate surface
  • Only 5 height presets
Starting at $150


Amazon.com

11. High Supply


Lorell Sit-to-Stand Monitor RisersRead Our Full Review

Pros

  • Low price, high (advertised) weight capacity

Cons

  • Cheap pressed wood surface
  • Keyboard tray has a tendency to fall off
  • Lifting mechanism issues reported
Starting at $159.99


Amazon.com

12. FancierStudio


House of Trade Standing Desk RisersRead Our Full Review

Pros

  • Accommodates users over 6′, comes fully assembled

Cons

  • Shakes when fully raised
  • Some users report locking mechanism issues
  • Non-adjustable keyboard tray can be too high when sitting and too low when standing
Starting at $179.99


Amazon.com

Best Stand Up Desk Converters (Z-Lifts, Single Lift) by Ranking

These next models are akin to Z-Lifts but have one lifting bar in the center of the base (rather than two on either side). They are not as stable as normal Z-Lifts with two bars, but they tend to be more compact—the best option for extremely tight work spaces.

Stand Up Desk Converter (Z-Lift, Single Lift) Pros/Cons Price

1. Flexispot Compact


Flexispot Compact Standing Desk ConverterRead the Full Review

Pros

  • 27″ or 32″ wide models, single bar lift mechanism
  • Infinite stops, quiet gas strut lift mechanism

Cons

  • “Single lift” frame is inherently less stable than Z-Lifts, which have dual bars on either side
  • Work surface not as stable as dual bar frames
  • Compact size not ideal for multiple monitors
Starting at $199


Amazon.com

2. MountIt


MountIt Sit-Stand ConverterRead the Full Review

Pros

  • Comes with a free monitor arm that helps adjust your monitor height at any level

Cons

  • Small work surface does not allow space for a laptop
  • The keyboard tray is non-adjustable
  • “Single lift” frame is inherently less stable than Z-Lifts, which have dual bars on either side
Starting at $145


Amazon.com

* Please note, Amazon prices may vary as per vendors’ discretion.

For all our standing desk converter reviews, see our sit-stand converter comparison review page.


Top 3 Factors to Consider When Buying Z-Lift Stand Up Desk Converters

Keep these points in mind as you’re comparing Z-Lifts.

Do You Use Dual Monitors?

If you’re looking to support multiple monitors, some Z-Lifts will handle the weight better than others. When evaluating your options, consider three factors:

  1. Work Surface Width
  2. Advertised Weight Capacity
  3. Counterbalance Force Mechanism

The first two are fairly self-explanatory. A wider work surface will offer you more space for your monitors and ensure better lateral stability. A heavy weight capacity means the device can handle the extra weight of the monitors.

However, weight capacity alone is not enough to tell if your device can handle the extra weight. This is where the engineering term “counterbalance force” comes in. It’s more difficult to assess counterbalance force without actually seeing the product in action. Our in-house reviews can help. Basically, the best devices have large, high quality air pistons that assist in lifting and lowering the workstation. This way you don’t have to lift up all (perhaps 50 lbs!) of the workstation using your arms (or back) alone.

Of course the great irony is that many of these devices designed to help workers with back pain actually aggravate it with their poorly designed lift mechanisms. We’ll point out which products have solid lift mechanisms.

How Noisy is the Unit?

You may not expect it, but switching between sitting and standing can be a noisy affair, a minor disturbance your coworkers won’t appreciate. If you’re in a quiet office environment, look out for models with lift mechanisms that latch into place at predetermined height intervals. They ‘click’ noisily and can be a nuisance. You’ll hear us distinguishing between ‘spring lift’ and ‘gas lift with brake’ mechanisms. Gas lift is smooth and silent.

Is it Ergonomically-sound?

We’ve already mentioned monitor arms are not included with Z-Lifts. They will be an extra cost. As for tilting ergonomic keyboard trays, there is only one model we’ve seen with this feature, correctly emulating a proper ‘neutral’ position for your arms and wrists to rest at while you type and stand.


If you want more items to consider when purchasing a standing desk converter, see our article Top 8 Factors to Consider When Buying a Standing Desk Converter.