The year 2020 has become the year of working from home, causing millions of people to need to whip up a home office practically overnight. If you’re wondering what you need to set up your own home office (or if you’re looking to upgrade your current setup), we’ve compiled a list of everything you’ll need to get started.
As we worked on this list, we approached it from the viewpoint that you do already have a desk or workable surface, along with a decent laptop or desktop computer. Otherwise, this list covers the best home office supplies, from keyboards to cable management tools. With it, you’ll be ready to handle video calls and
watch YouTube videos type up reports all day. We also tried to select ergonomic products, so you can maintain proper posture as you work.
Huge Desk Mat: Razer Gigantus v2 XXL
Protect your desk and make it look more stylish with the Razer Gigantus v2 XXL Desk Mat. The mat not only provides a smooth area on which you can maneuver your mouse, but it also ensures your desk won’t get scuffed up when doing so. And, to be frank, it also does a good job of tying everything on your desk together and making it look neat.
The Gigantus v2 has a micro-textured surface for precise movement as well as a surface coating that allows for both fast and controlled movements. A non-slip rubber base keeps it in place on your desk, and a minimalist approach to branding and design won’t distract you.
A Quality Budget-Friendly Monitor: Dell 27-inch LED Monitor
A good monitor is a must if you own a desktop computer, and it can make it easier to view things if you’re working from a laptop. The Dell 27-inch LED Monitor is a solid monitor for your first home office, as its wide design allows for the comfortable viewing of two windows side by side. It also displays things in full 1080p HD.
The monitor has a wide 178-degree viewing angle, and it easily tilts so you can find the angle that works best for you. It also has stylish thin bezels and a small stand that won’t take up much space on your desk. The built-in power supply reduces clutter, and it offers both HDMI and VGA ports for flexible connectivity.
A Keyboard and Mouse Combo: Logitech MX Keys Wireless Keyboard Bundle
It can take days trying to track down a good keyboard and mouse. Lucky for you, our favorite mouse and keyboard come as a combo and even include an ergonomic palm rest. The Logitech MX Keys Wireless Keyboard Bundle is the perfect combination for your home office, plus the peripherals have a comfortable reliable design that’ll work as hard as you do.
The bundle includes the Logitech MX Keys Advanced Wireless Illuminated Keyboard, the Logitech MX Master 3 Advanced Wireless Mouse, and the Logitech MX Palm Rest. The mouse and keyboard offer a smart and easy-to-use design and their clean modern design allow them to blend in perfectly with most home office setups.
If you prefer mechanical keyboards, we have plenty of options for you there, too.
Speak Up: FIFINE K669B USB Microphone
If your current computer doesn’t have a decent built-in microphone, a simple USB microphone can easily fix the problem. The FIFINE K669B USB Microphone is a budget-friendly mic with great audio for the price and is plenty sufficient for workplace video calls.
The 16-bit 48 kHz cardioid-polar microphone does not come with software that would allow you to adjust settings. However, its stock settings are good enough for situations like video calls or recording podcasts right out of the box, so it’s a great beginner-friendly pick.
Listen to Music and Meetings with Comfy Headphones or Earbuds
Hearing coworkers on a video call can be difficult if you have kids or pets, but headphones offer an easy fix. The Skullcandy Venue Bluetooth headphones are a perfect pick for those who prefer an over-ear fit with active noise cancellation (ANC). The headphones have incredible bass response, a built-in microphone, 24-hour battery, and onboard controls for adjusting volume and more.
If you prefer earbuds to headphones, the Jabra Elite 75t are the pair we eagerly recommend. These true wireless earbuds offer a super comfortable fit, even when you wear them all day, as well as superb crystal-clear audio quality across all frequencies. The earbuds also have excellent battery life—around 7 hours—which is the better part of a workday, plus an additional 21 from the included charging case. They’re also getting an update at the end of October that brings active noise canceling (ANC).
If you already have some decent headphones or earbuds and can afford to wait just a bit, the Jabra Elite 85t are shipping later this year, which should bring improvements over the already-great 75t.
Illuminate Your Workspace: SHINE HAI Touch Control Desk Lamp
If your home office could use more light, a simple modern-looking lamp is all you really need. Some, like the SHINE HAI Touch Control Desk Lamp, even come with two fast-charge USB ports that let you charge your devices while you work.
The lamp’s simple minimalist design will easily blend in with the rest of the furniture in your room. It has three brightness levels, and you can cycle through each or turn the lamp on or off simply by touching the lamp’s base or pole. It also has a small footprint that won’t eat up too much space on your desk, and it comes with a vintage ST64 LED Light Bulb.
Reduce Strain: SimpleHouseware Metal Monitor Stand Riser
Hunching over your desk all day staring at your laptop is bound to cause discomfort for both your eyes and your neck at some point. Make your workspace more ergonomic with a stand riser on which you can set your laptop or monitor, and keep things at (or at least closer to) eye level.
This one from SimpleHouseware has a clearance of 5.8 inches, as well as compartments on the side and underneath for storing paper, pens, staplers, and other office supplies. In addition to providing relief to your eyes and neck, the riser also doubles as a supply organizer, which can keep your workspace clutter-free.
Charge All the Things: AUKEY 5-in-1 Wireless Charging Hub
The AUKEY 5-in-1 Wireless Charging Hub makes it easy to keep your phone, tablet, laptop, and other devices charged throughout your workday. It supports 10W wireless fast charging for compatible devices as well as 5W standard wireless charging. It also has a 100W USB-C Power Delivery port that’s perfect for charging the likes of a MacBook Pro.
The AUKEY Hub‘s HDMI port outputs 4K at 30fps video to large screens with ease. It also uses USB 3.0, which makes for rapid data transfer up to 5 Gbps if you need to connect an external hard drive or transfer files from your phone to your computer.
Protect Against Overload: Bototek Surge Protector
If you’re going to be using an artillery of electronics all day, you should have a reliable surge protector at your desk acting as a bulwark against power spikes and fluctuations. This one from Bototek has 10 AC outlets, 4 USB charging ports, and a 6-foot extension cord. It should be enough to cover computers, monitors, speakers, a printer, a lamp, and other peripherals without breaking a sweat.
Or, you might find it more practical to invest in a UPS battery backup with surge protection. The 600V APC UPS has seven AC outlets and a USB port for charging your phone. This unit will keep your devices powered in the event your power goes out.
Make Video Calls with a High-Quality Webcam
If you have a top of the line laptop, the built-in webcam is likely sufficient for video calls. But if you don’t (or if you’re also looking to get into streaming), you’ll want to upgrade to something better.
The Logitech C920e is a solid 1080p webcam, and it comes in environmentally friendly packaging. Its dual microphones, which are located on either side of the camera, record natural-sounding stereo audio and automatically filter out background noise.
If you have a tighter budget to stick to, definitely check out the AUKEY FHD Webcam. It has a 2 MP camera with a 1/2.9-inch CMOS sensor that can stream and record in 1080p HD at 30 fps. Fixed focus extends out to five meters, while dual microphones capture stereo audio.
If you are using the webcam on your computer, consider using a webcam cover for privacy. And if you can’t find a webcam to fit your needs or prefer to save a few bucks by getting creative, check out our webcam alternatives.
For Reminders, Schedules, and Doodles: Nøk and Cranny Whiteboard
This unique whiteboard from Nøk and Cranny makesit easy to jot down a quick note or draw out this week’s work tasks. It’s made of sustainable bamboo and even has a pull-out drawer that’s perfect for storing dry-erase markers, erasers, and other office supplies.
Manage Cords and Cables with Trays, Sleeves, and Clips
With all of the devices and accessories you’ve purchased for your home office, it’s pretty much inevitable you’ll need to set up some sort of cable management system. Luckily, there are a few options that’ll help you rein in the chaotic mess of cords and surge protectors that are likely engulfing the underside of your desk.
An under-desk cable management tray, like these from Scandinavian Hub, are perfect for keeping cords tucked up and out of the way behind or underneath your desk. It’s great for both traditional and standing desks, and comes in black, brown, and white to match your office. It’s easy to mount, and can be combined with others if you need more length.
If you’re wanting something that’s just … less, go with the JOTO Cable Management Sleeves. They let you line up all of your cables together and encase them in a flexible zip-up neoprene sleeve. The sleeves come four to a pack, and can each hold as many as 10 cables. You can even use ties or tape to stick it to the back of your desk for a super clean look.
Lastly, you can opt for a cable clip organizer, like this one from Baskiss, if you’re just wanting to keep charging cords at the ready. This organizer easily mounts to any surface, be it wood, glass, metal, or plastic. It has slots for seven cables (each measuring up to a max of 6 mm).
This post was written by Suzanne Humphries and was first posted to www.reviewgeek.com
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