Home Office Must Have’s
Working from home has become a way of life for many of us due to the COVID-19 Pandemic. While this is new for some, I’ve worked from home for the past 4 years. I wanted to share my work from home set up to help give you some ideas to optimize your home office experience.
After having a traditional desk for years, I finally decided to invest in a standing desk. I ended up choosing the Autonomous Home Office XL Standing Desk because it had great reviews and a good price point (about $400). I love having the flexibility to stand and my back certainly appreciates the relief!
Mat and Foot Rest
Standing is great but if you aren’t used to it you can get fatigued pretty fast. I found that a comfortable mat really helps me be able to stand longer without fatigue. I ordered this one from Autonomous: https://www.autonomous.ai/office-accessories/anti-fatigue-mat
When I am sitting, I use a foot rest to make sure that I’m sitting with proper posture.
I have two primary computers that I use: A Surface Laptop and Macbook Pro. I use an additional monitor for each of my devices (yes I know the monitors don’t match!). To mount the extra monitors, I got this Monitor Clamp from Autonomous.
You’ll also notice that I have each laptop elevated with a laptop stand so that the screen is more eye-level.
My wireless headset makes endless Teams meetings a breeze. I recently upgrade to this Sennheiser SDW 5066 Wirless DECT Headset. The DECT technology allows me to easily move around my entire house without loss of connection.
I love that I can have it connected to my laptop via the receiver and another device via bluetooth simultaneously. The noise cancelling microphone has been a God-send to help reduce background noise! This headset is Microsoft Teams Certified so it will automatically ring your headset when you get a Teams call, disconnect from the meeting when you put the mic on the stand and you can mute yourself directly on the headset.
Blue Yeti USB Microphone
When it comes to recording audio for my YouTube Channel Videos, I prefer to use my Blue Yeti Condenser USB Mic. This Mic is a favorite amongst many podcasters and YouTubers because of its excellent sound and price point.
Mic Stand, Mount and Pop Filter
One thing to know about the Blue Yeti Mics is they will pick up on other sounds like mouse clicks, keyboard typing, and thumps if you have it sitting directly on your desk. This is easily fixed by moving the mic off of your desk.
I chose this adjustable Microphone Arm which clamps to your desk. To use the mic arm, you need an additional shock mount for the Yeti so that it will fit on the arm and reduce vibrations and other noise distortions. Finally, I also use a Pop Filter over my mic to reduce unwanted hissing and popping.
Wireless Mouse and Keyboard
The Logitech MX Keys Keyboard and MX Master 3 Mouse have been a game changer for me. They are USB rechargeable so I don’t have to worry about burning through countless batteries. More importantly, you can have them connected to up to 3 devices simultaneously. This allows me to seamlessly transition between my Surface laptop and Macbook Pro.
Webcam and Light
Has anyone else noticed the rapid increase in people turning on their videos during meetings now? With video becoming increasingly important, I wanted to make sure I was getting the clearest picture possible. I use the Logitech C920S HD Pro Webcam because it offers crisp 1080p resolution and I can mount it slightly higher than the built-in webcam on my device.
You don’t really need a fancy webcam to have a good picture though because most modern laptops have pretty good webcams built in. The key to a clear picture really is all in the lighting. I opted to go the cheap route and purchase this Selfie Ring Light which I have mounted above and behind my webcam. It has multiple brightness levels and colors (soft white to yellow).
The light that I have is a great budget-friendly light, only setting you back $25. If you have a bigger budget then I suggest you check out the Elgato Key Light which you can control with an app. My colleague Rob Gates swears by these.
When I’m not in meetings and really want to focus, I throw on my Surface Headphones. They have active noise cancellation to block out my “co-workers” and of course music sounds great through them!
Flic Button + Smart LED Lights
I use my Flic buttons all over my house. You can check out my Flic-Powered Smart/Busy Light Solution in this blog post. I also use one as a doorbell for my office.
Echo Show 8
The Echo Show 8 is a nice addition to my home office. I use it to give me a daily rundown of the news and weather when I start my day. It’s great for playing background music while I work or even watching Hulu or YouTube videos in the background. I love that it connects with my smart cameras so I can easily see who’s at the front door without having to get out of my office.
Nectar Blue Light Blocking Glasses
Although I don’t need prescription glasses, I find that spending 10+ hours staring at a computer can be straining on my eyes. In one of my FabFitFun boxes, I received a pair of Nectar Blue Light Blocking Glasses. I was skeptical at first but I have to say they have greatly reduced the eye and headaches I was experiencing from my constant computer use.
There are a few other accessories for my Autonomous Standing Desk that I wanted to highlight.
The Autonomous Cable Tray helps keep all of my cables organized and tucked away for a clutter free work-space.
The Swivel Desk Drawer give me a comfortable space to use my MX Master 3 Mouse and some additional storage.
The LED Desk Lamp is great for those late nights when I want a little extra light.
The Desk Clamp Power Outlet gives me three power sockets and two USB ports that are easily accessible.
The Filing Cabinet matches my desk, is easy to move around and gives me three drawers for storage.
Thanks April, this is awesome!