Apathy and laziness are killing the world. Well, more America and other modernized countries that’s GDP is dependent on desk jockeys. In other words, we’re all sitting for too long. And it’s slowly killing us. Hence the “sitting is the smoking of our generation”. You’ve heard that one right? To combat this slow death spiral of artery clogging stagnation, a wide variety of top standing desks (see our list of best standing desks) have emerged in recent years. And one of the newest ones is Actio Standing Desks.
Summary: An exceptionally well built standing desk that’s only short comings are its pricey upsells.
What we liked:
- Well made and high end materials
- Pre-programmable height settings
What we disliked:
- Pricey up-sells
- Only comes in two sizes
What is Actio
Actio is a small company based in Austin, Texas. They’re designed and built right here in the USA. So home grown might be an apt description.
Desk Features and Pricing
The company currently offers two desk sizes:
- 62″ x 31″ x 3/4″
- 80 x 31″ x 3/4″
In fact, on their website that’s how you begin your shopping process; you pick the size of the desk. Next they’ll ask you what finish you’d like the desk, made from 100% natural bamboo plywood, should come in. You’ve got your choice of Amber, Blonde, or Auburn (this one adds an additional $40 to the price).
Following that you can pick from a variety of frame colors – made from aircraft grade aluminum – including Sky White, Rich Black Gloss, Brushed Silver (+$145), Brushed Black Coal ($195), Brush Aluminum Gloss ($95+). And if so desired there are a variety of options you can add, such as a keyboard tray ($345), cable management tray ($145+), surge protector ($95+) or grommet holes in the left, right or center for additional cable management.
With the most expensive options selected, the price caps out at $2,315 before tax.
Actio Standing Desk Hands On Review
I’ve used just one standing desk in the past. It was from Stealcase and from my understanding cost just over $1000. It worked ok, but often would break down, get its wires yanked out and its surface area, which was composed of a lament finish, was on the small side.
The Desk Surface
The Actio, so far seems to be anything but the aforementioned. The surface, made from 100% natural bamboo wood, is exceptionally crafted. The edges have been milled and the wood sealed without any signs of warping or imperfections. Aesthetically it most certainly reaches the top of the charts and seems, for the most part, to be impervious to water rings often caused by cups sitting for long periods of time.
My version arrived with a surge protector and keyboard tray. I don’t often use an external keyboard as I found my Macbook Air’s to be just fine. But for those seeking to maximize ergonomic bliss, and in turn reduce shoulder and arm strain, this is the way to go as you can adjust the angle and height with the push of your hands. Plus there is a knob for controlling the keyboards angle. So suffice to say its customizable to just about anyone’s needs.
What I wouldn’t opt for is the $95 up charge for the surge protector. It’s no more than a Belkin surge protector pinned under the desk by a few screws, which in my case weren’t properly aligned.
Stability and Legs
During assembly, which I only assisted with, I couldn’t help but notice how nicely crafted the legs and metal was; way above and beyond what I’ve seen in other standing desks. When I asked, I was informed that it is “aircraft grade” aluminum. A friend of mine remarked “why, does it fly?”. Of course not, but it looks cool and goes great with the bamboo finish.
In terms of stability, Actio says their desks can support 300-600lbs of weight. I haven’t sat on the desk, but according to their website this is intended to support accessories – what those would be I don’t know – not humans. However, I couldn’t tell you why the range of 300-600lbs. But 300lbs would seem to suffice in my case since all I have is a monitor, stand, and a few random glasses of liquid on my desk at most times. That and a few toss away t-shirst and protein powder (no judging).
As for as how stable the Actio is, well, I’d say fairly stable. It’s not impervious to shaking, but at max height things remain steady and balanced. A quick shake of the desk, though, and the monitor on my monitor stand will start to sway. Press my weight against the desk while leaning on it and it will begin to tip. So it’s no set it and forget it scenario – you still have to be some what mindful – but for everyday use it will be a nonissue, unless you have a serious tendency to constantly lean on your desk. If that is the case, you’re not using the standing desk right and you should read our piece on how to use a standing desk.
Up and Down, Motors
Despite my floor being uneven, the Actio moves up and down with luxury car smoothness. However, because my floor is slightly at an angle, and thus the legs are offset height wise, the desk tends to jump when going from high to low. This can be combatted with a few wood slats or a variation there of. In all fairness, the top of the desk, the desk itself, is the heaviest part, where as the legs and other pieces are quite light weight.
The Actio isn’t the cheapest standing desk on the market. But you didn’t need me to tell you that. But that in mind, it’s not the smallest, and it doesn’t feel like they skimped on anything, save for the surge protector, which feels like a down right oversell.
A nice touch are the controls; there are three buttons (in addition to the up and down buttons) that can be preprogrammed to set different heights. There is also a small screen to indicate height, which you might think is pointless, but is quite useful to achieve the same height again and again.
The Actio Standing Desk is available now and ships within 10-12 days.