Most of us are viewing monitor screens one way or the other as a part of our daily routine. People who are working at offices have the most usage of a monitor. Given that monitors are perhaps one of the most used hardware, maximizing comfort and enhancing the viewing experience becomes an important consideration.
For this reason, many people use monitor arms. They help out in saving desk space and assist in balancing your work area. If you don’t have an idea about buying the right monitor arm, we have reviewed the best ones for you below.
What is a Monitor Arm?
A monitor arm is a device that holds up a computer monitor. It is a supporting device that works as a monitor bracket to hold up the monitor at an angle that is comfortable to your eyes while ensuring that there is minimal desk space usage. The monitor arms are clamped to the backside of a desk. Monitor arms allow you to move your monitors more easily and adjust the position accordingly. The best part about monitor arms is that they have the cable setup well managed so that you don’t have to do any hassle.
How Are Monitor Arms Useful?
Other than the basic benefits mentioned above, there are certain other ways as well in which monitor arms are useful. Most importantly, they can help you in reducing the level of fatigue and discomfort while you are working. People who spend a lot of time on the screens may face neck, back, and eye pain while with a monitor arm, the proper angle can be set and adjusted every time restricting all the fatigue and discomfort for the users.
In everyday work environments, this can ultimately lead to improved work productivity. In many practical experiments, it was found out that people were able to work better and faster when they had the monitor screens adjusted as per their convenience.
Many people had the question: The monitor stays there. So how does a monitor arm reduce the space requirement? To answer this question, take the case of a monitor stand which you would use if you didn’t have the monitor arm. This stand will come on top of the desk while the monitor arm will not take any space on your desk. The stand will restrict your ability to move the monitor easily while the arm will adjust effortlessly.
Types of Monitor Arms
There are different types of monitor arms that one can use as per their budget and requirements. These monitor arms all perform the same function but some have more user ease compared to others.
As the name suggests, the spring mounts have springs inside them. They are relatively expensive but considered one of the best ways to hold your monitor. The spring mounts can move in literally any direction and do not require much effort.
There are gas spring mounts which are easier to use compared to the other type, the mechanical spring mounts. As a result of these spring mounts, one can always have a very precise positioning making a comfortable work environment around them. If you work in quiet workspaces, the spring one is recommended as it does not make much sound while the mechanical one does.
Wall mounts have arms that are usually fixed or allow for a very limited change from the initial position. These mounts are attached directly to a wall with the monitor arms extending from them. Wall mounts are usually required by medical professionals who want to move away from any equipment.
The wall mounts have monitor arms that can be rotated in a particular direction but moving them up or down is not that easy. Yet, they are one of the most popular versions used today.
Chairs also contribute to the ergonomics and comfortability of the workspace. Find out more here – Ergonomic Chairs Vs Non-Ergonomic Chairs: Is Spending All That Extra Money Worth It?.
What to Look for When Buying a Monitor Arm?
When buying a monitor arm, there are certain things you should look for which will help you in making the right purchase. They will help you in having the monitor arm last for a longer period of time.
This is the most important consideration when buying a monitor arm. The term VESA stands for Video Electronics Standards Association and the VESA compliance defines the level of compatibility between a monitor and the monitor arm mount. So what exactly is the difference between a VESA and a Non-VESA Compliant device?
A VESA monitor has standard mounting holes on its backside which allow you to use any particular mount. These holes have been drilled inside the frame of the monitor. Four such holes are usually drilled in a square positioning so that any kind of mount can be used. Make sure that your monitor has VESA compliance else you may have to get a special kind of monitor arm.
Consider your workstation prior to buying a monitor arm. If the monitor arm is excellent in build and quality but does not match your workstation requirements, it will just be a useless item for you. Make sure you have the correct desk measurements as well as its gap from the wall so you can see which wall mount will be appropriate. The depth of the desk should be considered as well because it will explain how long should be your monitor arm.
There are two things to be considered in this. The first one is the weight of your monitor and the second one being the weight load that the monitor arm can bear. It is always advised to have the safety margin kept and not use the weight standards perfectly to scale. For example, if your monitor weighs 7kg, you should get a monitor arm that can support more than 10kg of weight so that there is a safety margin of at least 3kgs.
As a general rule of thumb, monitor arms that support higher weight are going to be a better choice since they will not break down easily and are generally made out of high-quality materials.
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Best Monitor Arms
The trusted choice of thousands of users is the AmazonBasics Monitor Arm. It comes in several variants such as a single monitor, dual monitor, and also a notebook mount one. Effortlessly rotate your monitor with this arm as it has a fluid mechanism. Be sure that your monitor is 32 inches or lower. Best thing? It comes with a 1-year warranty by AmazonBasics.
As far as the functionality is considered, the arm can extend, retract, tilt to different angles, rotate between portrait and landscape mode as well. It reduces strain and helps you tidy up all of the extra desk space that was being used earlier. Like we mentioned, weight concerns are one of the most important ones that you should take into account. For this monitor arm, there is a maximum weight capacity of 25lbs equivalent to 11.3 kg which means you should keep a safety margin of about 3lbs or 2kgs for your monitor.
It is also VESA Compatible so no need for any extra work. If you are worried about how to tighten the amazonbasics monitor arm, all you need to do is push it to a neutral position and press the forward end of the arm with one hand. This will leave ample space for the wrench to adjust the screw. Increase tension for larger displays and vice versa.
The quickest way to adjust the tension to a “neutral” position is to press the forward end of the arm down with one hand so that the hex wrench can clear it, then adjusting the screw with the other. Turn the hex wrench counterclockwise to increase tension for larger displays, or clockwise for lighter displays.
Those who are looking for a relatively budget-friendly option can get this one. Coming with a gas spring mechanism, you are assured of easy rotations and position changes at all times. Being a universal monitor arm, this one fits most monitors within the range of 17 inches to 30 inches of screen size.
Comparing this option with the earlier one, it has relatively lower weight support at about 19.8lbs compared to 25lbs of Amazonbasics. However, it is VESA Compliant making it easier for you to use this arm. Adjust it accordingly and personalize your office space as per your desires. A fun feature of this monitor arm is that it allows you for a 360-degree rotation in the landscape orientation.
Being a certified Amazon’s choice product with an average rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars, we can say that this is truly among the best monitor arms for offices. Please note that the USB cables are not provided so you have to buy that separately.
Monitor arms have made workstations easier and helped out in improved the productivity of the workers. When comparing different types of mounts, we can conclude that the gas spring ones are the most suitable type because of their easy movement and rotation in any way possible. Of the two options we mentioned above, both are suitable with a key difference in the weight support which you should consider prior to buying any. Best of luck with your purchase!