A Portable Standing Desk for Hot Desking


When I think of a great “standing desk” the last thing I think about it portability. But that’s exactly what the Zest Desk is all about. Ok, truth be told, it’s not a full blown standing desk, but if you work in a co-working space like I do, it could be a great stop gap measure, especially if you sit for 8-10 hours a day and don’t use the same desk every day. How so? Keep reading my review to find out.

Overview

Summary: A standing desk for hot desking. But it won’t replace a stand alone (no pun intended) standing desk.

Price: $340 – $449 at Zest Desk
Availability: Now

What We Liked

  • Easy to setup (for the most part)
  • Light enough to carry in one hand thanks to a built in handle
  • Feet can be adjusted even when stuff is placed on top of it
  • Fairly stable thanks in part to the rubber feet

What We Didn’t

  • Requires at least a 24″ wide surface
  • Additional monitor stand not stable enough for a large monitor (27″ monitor in my case)
  • Bag not included unless you pay extra
  • Not quite tall enough for me (6′ 2″) to feel comfortable

Design

A built in handle hides away when unfolded and makes carrying the Zest Desk a breeze.

The Zest Desk weighs just 12.6lb, which is pretty light, especially when you consider some massive gaming laptops can weigh more. So for the most part, it’s easy to carry the Zest Desk, especially because there is a built in handle that only appears when it’s folded up. And yes, it folds up making it more compact and easier to carry, though I was a bit disappointed that the base price of $349 doesn’t include the bag.

1497564524_963_a-portable-standing-desk-for-hot-desking A Portable Standing Desk for Hot Desking

The Zest Desk legs fold up and down without the need to flip any switches.

That being said, the legs’ height can be adjusted from to 10.6″ to 15 inches. Even on top of my desk, at WeWork, a co-working space, this didn’t quite accommodate me, as I stand at 6′ 2″, as I prefer to have a standing desk that is closer to lower/mid chest height such that my arms are comfortable extended below my shoulders and my eyes are looking forward at my screen. Adding a monitor with a stand can help alleviate this issue since the keyboard should be lower than where you look, but I think the take away here is that the Zest Desk is not a complete replacement, height wise, for a true standing desk, at least for someone of my height.

Related: Our #1, BEST Standing Desk

My package included a monitor stand. It stows away neatly underneath the Zest Desk for portability, though it took me a few minutes to figure out how to unlatch it and place it on the correct side up. In fact, it was the only challenge I faced when setting up the Zest Desk. Which is to say setup is intuitive and fast; just 30 seconds.

1497564525_719_a-portable-standing-desk-for-hot-desking A Portable Standing Desk for Hot Desking

A few pins keep the Zest Desk locked in place.

To break down the Zest Desk it doesn’t take more than 30-45 seconds, and another 15-30 seconds to get it into the bag, which at times can be a bit fiddly but doable by all accounts, and without the help of anyone.

In Use

As mentioned, I’m 6′ 2″. The Zest Desk, while perched on my desk, is still too low to provide the necessary height to bring my arms and eyes to their optimal position. However, it’s a reasonable stop gap measure. But since I don’t “hot desk“, meaning I have the same desk every day, there are alternatives to the Zest Desk that can accommodate my height better, such as the Taskmate Go, or equivalent there of (seen below).

However, if I were hot desking, or moving from desk-to-desk every day, which generally means I wouldn’t be able to leave my stuff in one place for the foreseeable future, I can see where the Zest Desk can play a significant and pivotal role in alleviating one’s all day sitting. But what I did discover – and you’ll want to be sure to check – is that the design of the Wework desks in my office aren’t suitable for the Zest Desk. How so?  There is a hole in the middle of the desk’s surface to accommodate a power strip, computer and monitor cords. As a result my Zest Desk was always teetering on the edge of the gap and ready to fall, which doesn’t lend itself to stability.

Related: How to Properly Use a Standing Desk

However, the Zest Desk is remarkably stable given its portability and weight, provided all 4 feet can lay flush on the surface of the desk. But again, you’ll need a fairly wide surface, at least 24 inches in width.

Wrap Up

1497564525_484_a-portable-standing-desk-for-hot-desking A Portable Standing Desk for Hot Desking

The Zest Desk feet easily adjust.

There is no question in mind that the Zest Desk is well made, and with care at that. Even when folding up the Zest Desk, the body magnetizes together. The legs also fold and unfold in a soft yet solid manner, leading me to believe they won’t break anytime soon, even after constant use. That said, my Zest Desk’s corners did mar from standing it up right on the floor, even though I didn’t do that too often.

1497564525_726_a-portable-standing-desk-for-hot-desking A Portable Standing Desk for Hot Desking

So can I recommend the Zest Desk? Yes, but largely for those that are “hot desking”. And while it’s just under 13lbs, it’s important be to mindful, because if you’re a nomad like worker, it’s likely you’re already carrying a 5lb laptop and a few other pieces of gear. And lastly, make sure you measure first. The Zest Desk is convenient, but it won’t fit every where, and the legs and their width are locked into place, so you can’t narrow its stance.


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