Which monitor arms are best?

Working from behind a desk on a daily basis can wreak havoc on your health and comfort. Being able to position your monitor at a viewing angle that encourages proper posture is one of many modifications you can make to your workstation to prevent back pain, headaches and muscle stiffness. 

The Ergotron LX Single Monitor Arm allows you to position and lock your display however you prefer. It can be mounted to your desk or table via a clamp or a grommet and allows for 360 rotation of your screen. Available in three modern finishes, this monitor arm looks great in any workspace.

What to know before you buy a monitor arm

Why use a monitor arm?

Standard computer monitors come with stands that allow for a limited range of motion and positioning. Most let you change the viewing angle of your screen but do not allow you to move your display up and down or rotate it. A monitor arm affixes to the back of your existing display and gives you much more freedom to move, rotate, tilt and otherwise adjust your monitor to your liking.

Your comfort

If you are able to work away at your desk with a standard monitor setup, you don’t need to invest in a monitor arm. However, if you find yourself finishing work with an aching head, stiff shoulders or a sore neck, you will likely benefit from the flexibility offered by a monitor arm.

Your workstation

Not all desks and workstations can accommodate a monitor arm. While you are free to modify your home office in any manner you like, shared workspaces and cubicles may pose a challenge if you don’t own your desk. Additionally, some spaces may be too small to allow you to get the most out of your monitor arm. Consider your work area and carefully measure the space you use to ensure that a monitor arm will work for you. Also, many monitor arms require screws and bolts for the most secure installation. Owners of glass or metal desks may find that their furniture cannot accommodate the monitor arm they prefer.

What to look for in a quality monitor arm

Weight limit

Invest in a monitor arm that can hold more weight than the monitor you currently own in order to accommodate future displays that may be heavier or larger. Since monitor arms are simple and removable, you may find that you own your monitor arm longer than any single display.

Extension

The more your monitor arm is able to safely extend, the more flexibility you will have when it comes time to position it to your liking. Select an arm with the longest extension possible to guarantee both present and future usability. 

Looks

Monitor arms are available in a range of modern finishes. From matte black to shining aluminum or white, you can find a model to suit almost any aesthetic.

Desk attachment

Mounting your monitor arm securely to your desk or table is critical to prevent damage to your display. Some models feature little more than a clamp that can be tightened by hand. More robust options may require drilling. Consider the material of your desk, the weight of your monitor and your confidence with tools to determine which attachment method will keep your equipment safe.

Articulation and rotation

Select a monitor stand with a wide range of articulation and rotation so you are able to position your display where you want it without running into limitations in your arm’s capabilities. Developers appreciate being able to rotate monitors vertically in order to code more efficiently, whereas video editors may prefer a full-screen look at their project on one monitor with their editing timeline taking up a screen mounted below. Choosing a model that allows for complete freedom with regard to positioning will allow you to keep your workspace tailored to your needs.

How much you can expect to spend on a monitor arm

Monitor arms can cost as little as $35. Models at this price range, however, may not be up to the task of safely holding large, high-quality displays. To ensure quality, expect to spend between $60-$100 on your monitor arm.

Monitor arm FAQ

Are there double monitor arms?

A. Yes. As multiple monitor configurations have become increasingly popular, many manufacturers now provide monitor arm models that can accommodate more than one screen. These double or triple arms allow you to position your screens in whatever arrangement best suits your workflow and preferences. 

Can I mount my monitor arm to my wall or ceiling?

A. In some cases, yes. As long as your monitor arm includes a bracket for mounting onto a flat surface and the articulation required for comfortable use, you can affix your monitor arm to any sturdy surface. Be sure that you only mount your monitor arm to a wall or ceiling with studs present, as drywall alone will not be enough to hold your equipment.

Can I use a monitor arm on a standing desk?

A. Yes. In fact, the additional flexibility granted by a monitor arm makes it more comfortable to transition from sitting to standing throughout the day.

What are the best monitor arms to buy?

Top monitor arm

Ergotron LX Single Monitor Arm

Ergotron LX Single Monitor Arm

What you need to know: Available in three modern finishes, this monitor arm allows for any number of positions.

What you’ll love: Put your display where you like with this heavy-duty, futuristic monitor arm. It allows for 360-degree rotation and is fully articulated. This monitor arm is mounted to your desk via its included clamp or grommet mount.

What you should consider: Users find that this stand performs poorly with heavier displays.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon, Staples and Dell

Top monitor arm for the money

WALI Monitor Arm Mount for Desk

WALI Monitor Arm Mount for Desk

What you need to know: This budget monitor stand is great for lightweight displays.

What you’ll love: The 360-degree rotation and up to 31-inch height make this monitor stand accommodating for a wide range of users. It includes hardware for both clamp and grommet mounting.

What you should consider: This monitor stand is a bit wobbly and cheap feeling, according to some users. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon 

Worth checking out

HUANUO Dual Monitor Stand

HUANUO Dual Monitor Stand

What you need to know: This monitor arm can hold two displays and costs less than some that can only accommodate one.

What you’ll love: For those with two monitors, this dual-arm stand provides a great deal of flexibility and tough construction. Two mounting options and full articulation make this model a great purchase for its price.

What you should consider: These monitor arms will bring your display closer to the front of your desk, so those with shallow desks may find themselves too close to their screen for their comfort.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

 

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Derek Walborn writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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