Autonomous Smart Desk 2 Review: A Premium, Programmable Sit-Stand Wonder
Reviewing The Autonomous Smart Desk 2: A Self-Adjusting Sit-Stand Desk
Adjustable sit-stand desks are all the rage these days, after some smart person in the healthcare field put two and two together to figure out that planting your backside in an office chair all day long is really not good for you, and in more ways than one. Adjustable height desks come generally in two variants, stand-alone models like the Autonomous Smart Desk 2 you see above and desktop risers that essentially convert a standard desk to sit-stand positioning capability. Pricing for the various model types out there range from the cheesy $149 versions, to north of $500 or so for premium, motorized adjustable models.
However, the Autonomous Smart Desk 2 is a bit of an enigma. The cleanly-styled Home Edition 53-inch motorized desk weighs in at $299 and supports up to 220 pounds, while the 53-inch Business Edition model at $399 supports a 300-pound capacity. This places the Autonomous Smart Desk 2, with its 4 position height adjust preset capability, at solid $200 cheaper than the average motorized sit-stand desk; or less, sometimes a lot less. There are much larger 70-inch Smart Desk 2 versions for $549 as well, but for the majority of users, the standard 53-inch model is plenty spacious enough.
So what does a relatively inexpensive, semi-automatic, adjustable sit-stand desk look like these days? Like this...
We opted for the White finish but there are several colors and finishes to choose from, including Black, Walnut, Light Oak, and Bamboo. The finish of the Smart Desk 2 is very solid and durable, not easily marked or scratched. Our model has what we would call a "satin" finish with just a hint of gloss so it's not completely flat but with little glare. It actually makes for a really nice studio desk for photography and video work, with the minor exception of its brushed aluminum cable pass-throughs breaking up the otherwise clean, pure white look.
The SD2's base and telescoping stand is made of a heavy-gauge steel construction that weighs a ton (figuratively) but inspires confidence along with excellent stability. In fact, there's nothing about this desk that isn't full industrial strength, at least when it comes to the Business Edition model we have in-house.
Also, as with most things in life, assembly is required with the Autonomous Smart Desk 2, which ships in two boxes. Here's a quick nickel how-to tour and demo of the desk in action. As you'll see, it's all rather slick...
Autonomous Smart Desk 2 Hardware And Component Kit And Instructions
Forty-some odd nuts and bolts later, along with some wiring and cable ties and you're left with a well-engineered, programmable sit-stand desk that looks great and makes few compromises for its flexibility.
Our studio space has extremely level flooring but if you're working in less than even spaces, the bottom of the desk has adjustable leveling feet that can be extended or retracted to make sure the desk is balanced and completely stable.
Finally, of course there's the programmable, automatically adjusting (or manually if you so choose) control system that resides underneath the desk, with an illuminated control panel peeking out beneath the front, right edge. You've got four height memory presets to work with here, which is plenty in our opinion. You can also just hit the Up/Down arrows if you so choose to dial in the height in with virtually infinity granularity up to a max of 50.7 inches or a minimum of 25.1. The system movement is also very smooth and slows down at the end of each range without a jarring bump or jolt when you take your finger off a button or when it arrives at a programmed height.
And it holds a ton of geek gear, so there's that...