The best workspaces are always transforming and consistent work in progress.
My home office is always changing, maybe a little too frequently. Here are the latest additions to my home office and work-from-home setup! I hope it gives you some ideas for your own desk setup.
The first and most significant upgrade is a month-old LG 40″ Curved Ultrawide screen.
It’s become commonplace to multitask, alt-tab, and have multiple windows open on the screen – even if it means watching YouTube videos while working – and the extra screen estate provided by an ultrawide is well worth the investment.
This massive display has a 5K resolution, so text, photos, and videos are sharp and crisp even at its large 40″ size, and the slightly increased refresh rate of 72HZ from the standard 60Hz will aid in smoother scrolling.
These features may not appear to be much on paper, but they have saved me a lot of time digging through various documents and windows and have helped clarify my view of what I’m working on simply because I can have multiple views up on a single screen.
Furthermore, the stunning display and its design help to elevate the entire space as the focal point. It’s supported by a heavy-duty single monitor arm and a 100 x 100 VESA mount, and it’s amazing to see such a large monitor floating above a sit-stand desk.
Because the monitor is so large and my home office doesn’t get much natural light, it’s critical to keep this space well-illuminated, and smart lights are the perfect solution.
I bought the Govee RGBIC Neon Rope Lights to complement the existing Philips Hue lights on the feature wall behind the monitor.
Unlike the other smart lights I own, this 16-foot rope light is completely bendable and customizable, allowing me to shape it and adjust the lighting to fit my space exactly how I want it.
The setup is simple: plug it in and stick it up with the included 3M adhesive tape. I’ve configured it to contour to the corners of the wall, which helps to expand the small space.
The innovative RGBIC technology – the additional letters representing the IC chip that allows a wide range of colors to be displayed on a single light strip – is possibly the coolest part of this rope light.
This gives me 16 million color options and allows me to set up an environment for focus during the day and a really cozy vibe later in the evening.
The crazy RGB lighting modes, while cool, aren’t for me — they appear a little too unicornish to me.
Be aware that it is not yet compatible with the 5GHz WiFi band, which is unfortunate. However, at $80, it is considerably less expensive than the over $200 Philips alternative.
Keeping hydrated at my desk can be an afterthought, especially on a hectic day, so I keep a large glass of water next to me at all times. Pushing through a workday while dehydrated is the worst thing you can do.
When it comes to staying hydrated with filtered, clean water, this LARQ Pitcher has been a lifesaver.
You already know how much I enjoy using the LARQ Bottle while traveling, so when LARQ approached me about featuring their LARQ Pitcher, it was a no-brainer.
The Pitcher here, like their bottles, uses a two-step filtration method. The water is filtered through this advanced filter here before being filtered again by the PureVis UV light, which prevents bacteria growth in the water and the pitcher itself.
The filter removes common contaminants such as chlorine, mercury, copper, lead, and other nasties found in tap water that we do not want. I don’t have to worry about replacing the filter every two weeks because it can filter up to 60 gallons (270 liters) of water before needing to be replaced.
Instead of guessing when the filter needs to be replaced, the fancy LARQ app monitors the filter’s health and alerts me when it does. It also automatically turns on the UV light and tracks my water intake, making it much easier to drink the recommended eight glasses of water per day even when things get hectic at work.
Plus, I’m a sucker for nice-looking things, and the LARQ Pitcher looks far superior to traditional pitchers. This one is in the very clean Pure White colorway, and it looks right at home in my home office.
For daily inspiration, I have two drilled-in ledges on the left side of my setup that display my custom frame prints and the YouTube Creators Award Plaque.
I decided to slightly update this space by replacing one of the frames with a super cool deconstructed original iPhone from 2007.
Gridd Studio’s handcrafted frame restores old original iPhones, deconstructs them, and frames them into literal works of art because technology is art. The packaging it came in was also a work of art in and of itself.
The Grid 1 here, which depicts the iconic, original iPhone, is a limited-edition piece limited to 999 units, making it even more special.
Spending time hanging up beautiful art keeps your space inspiring, interesting, and aesthetic!
Speaking of inspiring your home office, I’ve discovered that keeping a pen and paper near your desk is not only useful but also thought-provoking and inspirational.
I recently purchased StudioNeat’s MarkOne Pen, which is a simple, attractive ceramic pen in white and copper.
It fits perfectly into Grovemade’s lovely pen stand, and I paired it with StudioNeat’s notebooks, which are pocket-sized dotted soft paper pads with cool archive stickering.
In a digital-first world, there’s something romantic about the analog, so it’s nice to have a beautiful pen on display and easily accessible when inspiration strikes.
The new iPad Air is a recent purchase that I thought I wouldn’t need but has proven useful!
Its thin portability and newly included beast of a processor, the M1, make it an excellent companion when working remotely – it’s powerful enough to replace my MacBook when necessary while also being more portable to carry around with me.
Perhaps more surprising is how useful it has been as a desk next addition. I can extend the MacBook’s desktop from my ultrawide and go ultra-wide with the iPad thanks to Apple’s SideCar functionality. While working on the main screen, I have the stock market, news, or videos playing.
When combined with the Apple Pencil, you have a highly versatile device for taking notes and managing daily tasks. The iPad on this list, on the other hand, is more of a luxury item than a necessity.
Because my home office is designed to be mobile, having a dependable portable hard drive is essential if I want to pick up my work and go.
TEAMGROUP’s M200 2TB is the most recent portable SSD drive I purchased.
It’s a tough, lightweight, and high-performance SSD drive that weighs only 83g and has lightning-fast transfer speeds of up to 2000mbs per second, which is four times faster than USB 3.2 gen 1 SSDs. This allows me to transfer a 5GB file in under 10 seconds, which saves me a significant amount of time.
It is inspired by the M200 sniper rifle, thus the name and its cooling surface area are designed to represent the rifle’s pic rails. It’s made of graphene and has passed the TEAMGROUP’s 2-meter drop test.
I believe that investing in furniture is as important as investing in technology, so I replaced the previous shelf with Grovemade’s newly released matte black desk shelf.
They’re better known for their plywood and solid walnut wood shelves, but the addition of a sleek matte black will suit some setups better for those who don’t love the wood aesthetic.
The black blends in more naturally and complement the monitor, while the smart lights appear to refract the lighting off the sheen of the matte black for a really nice lighting vibe.
Finally, and most importantly, my new PC work and gaming build is the most expensive addition to this space.
Why do I require both an expensive Mac and a PC setup? Let’s be honest: I don’t.
But having a powerful PC setup alongside a Mac is useful for things like 3D rendering, video editing, and, of course, winding down and gaming on the same desk and monitor – all I need to do is switch monitor inputs!
It’s also nice to have access to both the Windows and Mac ecosystems.
This minimal blackout setup includes a Radeon 6900XT, which was difficult to obtain, and a Ryzen 5800X.
I hope you enjoyed this list of upgrades; as you can see, I’m quickly outgrowing this space, so stay tuned for a home office and space upgrade.
If you have any questions about this setup, please leave a comment or DM on Instagram @andrewethanzeng.