What is the best monitor stand for my needs?
21 July 2021
It can be daunting when deciding on the right monitor stand with so many available. This guide will help you choose the right monitor stand, bracket or arm.
Last updated 21/07/2021
Why do I need a monitor stand when my monitor already has one?
There are many reasons to consider buying a replacement monitor stand or arm. Perhaps you have a multi-monitor setup, you need to reclaim some desk space or you need additional adjustability that a basic monitor stand lacks. Then there are ergonomic considerations. The last thing you want are health problems brought on by poor posture and viewing angles. There’s a lot to consider. Do you need a stand or an arm? What about VESA mounts? Do you need a wide range of adjustability? Let’s take a look the things to consider so you can be sure you’re making the right choice to suit your needs.
Firstly, the chances are that the stand that came with your monitor is pretty average. Adjustability and ergonomics are often afterthoughts. Especially when it comes to budget models. There are several reasons why adding a dedicated stand for your monitor(s) can really improve your workspace or even your gaming space.
Reasons to consider a monitor stand or arm
Discussions about ergonomics tend to relate to seating position and posture and less towards a correct monitor viewing angle. A poorly positioned monitor can lead to back and eye strain, and neck pain. Over time, you may even develop posture issues. Raising the position of your screens to the appropriate eye level helps to alleviate these concerns. If you spend many hours a day seated at a desk, all those hours really add up.
You may wish to adjust the positioning of your monitors. For example, do you need landscape or portrait mode capability? You may have a large primary monitor and a pair of smaller secondary monitors that requires a mounting with a little more flexibility. Do you need to swing them around to show to colleagues? Do you need to move them out of the way to maximise your desk space? Other users might never adjust them at all once they’ve been installed.
Reclaiming your desk space
A monitor stand typically has a large footprint. Placing monitors on arms can reclaim a good amount of desk space. Once you have a keyboard and mouse, a laptop or writing paraphernalia, papers and folders, plus your obligatory family or pet photos, there might not be any desk space left! An arm is a good way to reclaim a good chunk of it.
Convenience and productivity
If you’re planning a multi monitor setup, you may have no choice but to use a monitor arm, especially if your screens are not the same. Adding additional screens can boost productivity, allowing you to show more information and have more windows open at any given time. Monitor arms can help to align differently sized monitors into a more ergonomically friendly set-up.
Once you’ve made the decision to buy a monitor arm or stand, here are some things to consider
VESA mounting – make sure your monitor is compatible
Most, but not all monitors come with standard set of holes that form the attachment between the monitor and the stand. Some monitors cannot be separated at all, so it’s important to check this before spending money on an arm or mount that you may not be able to use at all! Most typical monitors come with VESA 100 support, which means it has a set of holes measuring 100mm square. Some very large monitors and TVs will typically use a larger mount. Check to make sure your monitor and arm are compatible.
Do you need a monitor arm or stand?
Do you just want to raise up the level of your monitor? A simple monitor riser stand might do the trick. The idea behind a riser is to raise the height of a monitor up to a more natural eye level. You’ll also gain some space under the stand which can be useful for placing a keyboard, books or pads. Some models also come with hub connectivity, adding conveniently placed USB or microphone ports.
Monitor arms offer a wider range of adjustment and much better flexibility than a basic stand. They typically attach via a clamp or screw mount. The best monitor arms come with with gas springs which makes them easy to move and adjust. Look for an arm that does what you want, so you can choose to adjust either height, pan (left/right) and tilt (up/down) movement to the levels you want. Some arms will allow you to fully rotate the screen up to 360 degrees, allowing you to adjust between landscape and portrait modes. Gas spring arms are the best of the bunch. They are suited to a wide range of screen sizes and weights and they offer effortless movement that’s well suited to users who like to move their screens to different positions, such as you’d do if you have a very large desk space or you wish to show the screen to someone else.
Mounting options- some things to look out for
There are a wide range of options to choose from including simple freestanding mounts, clamp mounts, through-desk mounts, wall mounts or even ceiling mounts.
A freestanding mount can be considered a superior replacement for your existing monitor stand. There are a few reasons you might go for this option. A replacement stand will usually allow for a greater range of adjustment, including height and tilt, and also may provide an option to rotate the screen to a landscape mode.
Clamp mounts can take the form of a simple G-Clamp that’s attached to the side or rear of your desk from below. Grommet mounts usually secure through a hole on the desk, perhaps through a cable management hole, but these aren’t always options if you can’t or won’t drill though a desk.
Wall mounts are self-explanatory, though weight limitations are often a factor, not to mention reluctance to drill into a wall.
Don’t forget that the number, size and weight of your screens will heavily influence your choice of stand or arm.
If you’re a gamer
A multi-monitor gamer will want to use identical monitors so you have consistent resolution, colours and refresh rates. A sim racer in particular will want adjustability to suit your seating distance and peripheral vision. If you’re using dual monitors, perhaps you’ll want to swing one out of the way so that your gaming monitor is directly in front of you? In that case you’ll need a gas spring arm that’s easy to frequently adjust.
For the ultimate in immersion though, nothing beats a full triple monitor setup. This means you don’t have to worry about an annoying bezel in your centre of vision, and the outer screens provide awesome peripheral visibility. A triple screen enthusiast gamer will know how important good triple monitor arms can be. Triple monitor setups can be found in many sim setups for racing.
Due to TVs having a larger, heavier design than monitors, vendors create dedicated TV mounts. These typically feature much larger VESA mounts and can also have customisable mounting systems to fit a wide range of TVs. TV mounts are also designed to hold much heavier loads than standard monitor mounts. TV mounts are available as wall or ceiling mounts.
Pay attention to specifications of monitor stands. Some monitor stands support larger, heavier monitors while others may only support small, light monitors. This is especially important to consider if you plan to purchase a multi-monitor stand due to their constrained design.
Also, consider the VESA mount size (or if your monitor does not have a VESA mount). Not having a VESA mount will limit you to using monitor stands. Many value-oriented monitors do not feature VESA mounts. If a monitor is equipped with a VESA mount, most are 100mm x 100mm in size. Some smaller monitors may feature a 75mm x 75mm VESA mount. TVs are typically designed with a large format VESA, 200mm x 100mm or 400mm x 200mm – sometimes a custom rectangle pattern is used which is why many good TV mounts offer good customisation options.
Choosing the right monitor arm can be difficult, but with these tips, hopefully you’re better armed with the knowledge to make it easier. As always, if you have any questions about our extensive range of monitor arms, don’t hesitate to get in contract with us at Mwave!
Browse our wide range of Monitor Stands, Arms, Brackets, Wall Mounts, Ceiling Mounts, TV Mounts and more HERE.