Use and Functionality
First of all this desk is heavy! Which is not a bad thing, this thing is solid! Pretty sure if I cut through this tabletop surface, its gonna be a solid mass besides the sections where the veneer finish attaches. While I could go down to Ikea and get a similar desk, the chance of that desk being filled with a hexagonal cardboard structures, which while ok for maybe 40-50lbs but I would not recommend trying to set up a water cooling setup on one. As a builder the reassurance that I have a solid platform that is adjustable if I am working on larger projects, such as my Case Labs SM8 or Folgertech FT5 3D printer. Keep in mind the motors are rated for 300lbs but that does not mean that the desktop itself will fail when that wait is met. After all there is a steel support rail running the length of the table top.
Ok, so the desk goes up and down, that is a given, however the ability to set profiles is amazing! My desk at work that is a few thousand dollars does not even have this feature. So seeing it in a desk that is under a grand and available on their models under $500 was at first glance a bit worrisome, the idea of “How can it be this affordable?”, “What corners were cut?” and “Is this gonna give out on me in six months?” Our contact at SmartDesk, reassured us of its quality and even asked for us to full try out the desk, not just a week long session of using it but a long term session to see how the desk felt, how was its on day to day operations and overall its quality. Does it feel cheap? Is it a gimmick? What improvements would you recommend? Well after about two months of use, I can easily say, the desk does not feel as if its gonna snap in half, I have used the adjustable settings daily for working on projects much easier and improvements are very minor. This desk is great for everything, desktop, workshop, and even lounging space for your pupper (at a reasonable height of course.)
Really the only improvements I recommend was a desk with a better edge on it, as the lip of the desk can over time start to nip are your wrist and forearms, or some sort of an add on that attaches a gel or cushion layer to the edge. In addition I recommended a brace that connects to the legs to minimize swaying I saw when using my 3D printer on the desk. While the desk was great for working on my 3D printers, due to the movement of the axis on my printer, vibration would transfer from the desk to my prints causing some ghosting lines in the final print. So while I recommend the desk for making my life easier while doing maintenance on the printers, I do not recommend the desk as a surface were you want to print at. This could be solved by either using a brace or switching to a four legged model. Keep in mind that the sway in the best is only apparent at its higher settings.
Overall, this desk is a winner in my book, from the amount of options available to surface types, surface shape and size, and the option to beef up the electronics are all prime ingredients when it comes to making the right customer experience. Comparing the SmartDesk’s feature pool with its budget-friendly price is no contest, I have seen a few other companies offering similar desks like λutonomous, however, their desk are usually a few hundred dollars more expensive or they nickel and dime the customer for every little thing. It’s easy to see that I truly enjoyed this desk and it has made a difference in the way I work on projects, but how much did I actually enjoy this desk? How much of an impact did this desk have on me? Well, this desk impressed me so much, that I personally bought a smaller model for my gaming set up to have the model λutonomous sent me be a dedicated photography/ project desk. It is for this reason that the SmartDesk 2 from λutonomous gets Modders Inc’s highest award of “Editor’s Choice.”