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Old 05-04-2013, 04:40 AM   #1
Xiaoxi
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Workstation Desks / Furniture

I know this is a long shot since most people here are...shall we say...budget minded.

NOW...is there anyone here who owns a legit studio workstation desk? I'm so frustrated!!! I'm working long hours and it's physically painful to deal with ergonomic challenges. I need some guidance...

Currently, I use a cart that slides my 88-key keyboard right under my desk. The problem is that the cart legs get in the way of me being able to slide in further toward the desk to comfortably reach mouse/keyboard. So I'm really straining a lot to be handling these at the same time, which I have to do for long periods of time. This is the biggest problem.

Second, whatever I get, I need to have my dual computer monitors touching the base of the desk. So with a combination of shelving and monitor arms, this can be achieved. But I'm concerned that the shelving and arms might not fit with each other in all kinds of ways, etc. A lot of studio desks seem to be under 30" in vertical space, so I'm concerned that wouldn't leave much room if the monitors are flushed in front of the shelf.

So I have a lot of very very specific concerns and am getting so frustrated with all the options I've skimmed around so far. They either address one problem but not the other, or are way too excessive for my needs, ie shitloads of rack space and cabinets, etc.

So I guess those of you who do have workstation desks, tell me what you use, what your physical setup is like, if you like it, etc. Point me in the right direction PLEASE.


PS: getting a Herman-Miller Aeron chair very soon. This should alleviate some of the physical strain but I know it won't solve everything....
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Old 05-04-2013, 11:52 AM   #2
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I am currently making a "L" shaped desk for my little home studio. Each part of the "L" is 80 inches long. The whole thing is 20" deep. The desktop is about 32" off ground so a computer chair arms can slide under it. I have a single desk jank thing set up currently to hold me over until next weekend when I put it all together but I love the dimensions. Just got to get some keyboard stand for the hardware synths....
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Old 05-04-2013, 11:56 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by FireHawk
I am currently making a "L" shaped desk for my little home studio. Each part of the "L" is 80 inches long. The whole thing is 20" deep. The desktop is about 32" off ground so a computer chair arms can slide under it. I have a single desk jank thing set up currently to hold me over until next weekend when I put it all together but I love the dimensions. Just got to get some keyboard stand for the hardware synths....

Jesus, 80" on each wing is pretty insane. Must require a big room.

Where are you getting the parts / materials to build this desk? I'm also thinking of building my own.
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Old 05-04-2013, 01:36 PM   #4
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suprisingly, Ikea actually has some pretty solid desks. mine is similar to this one, but without the drawers. its wide enough to have my audio monitors on each end, and i could easily fit two computer monitors between them (only have one now). it is a bit low (about 30") so it might not be high enough to fit some chairs with arms under it. they did have some that were taller though, and lots with different shelves and things (that looked to be about the right size for rack units actually). if you have an ikea near by, you might want to check it out.
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Old 05-04-2013, 06:34 PM   #5
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Cant u build, let someone build a desk specific to ur gear measurements?
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Old 05-04-2013, 08:22 PM   #6
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I know of a business here in Canada that builds custom studio furniture. That's probably not very helpful, though.

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Old 05-05-2013, 03:20 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Xiaoxi
Jesus, 80" on each wing is pretty insane. Must require a big room.

Where are you getting the parts / materials to build this desk? I'm also thinking of building my own.


My setup may not be nice enough for you lol. It's one piece of 48" x 81 1/2" x 3/4" plywood cut into two pieces and shaved down to 80" (this gets me my 2 24 x 80 pieces). I work for a trailer company so I can get the plywood at cost. I also got laminate from where I work as well (we do custom counter tops and such in some trailers.) I went to a local farm store and got some cheap "L" brackets roughly 12 x 12 with two screws on each leg. These are screwed to studs in the wall. The plywood is placed on top of these and screwed to the brackets. The laminate will be over the plywood. I am not 100% sure on how I want to trim it out yet. The reason I did this set up is so that there are no legs on the front of the desk. Allowing me to slide where ever I want. Because the "L" brackets are so long and I attached them to every stud (yes it was over kill) but this will hold more than I need. My Esoniq ESQ-1 synth probably weighs 30-60 lbs (good old 80s synths) so it has to support that plus other things.

Like I said I have a rough "test" desk made and I love it. Being able to move up and down the desk with no drawers, legs, or anything in the way is awesome (I'm not a drawer guy). Next weekend I will probably be putting in the real desk.

So yeah my setup will look more like a counter top than an actual desk, but it exactly what I want. I am going to get one of those rolling racks for all my rack mounted stuff and probably put it on the far end of one of my wings. This setup also allows me to have numerous things under the desk against the wall (such as a midi device i can trigger stuff with my feet).

As for my 80 x 80 setup it is because the room is intended to have two work stations in it :p
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Old 05-05-2013, 04:22 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jof1029
suprisingly, Ikea actually has some pretty solid desks. mine is similar to this one, but without the drawers. its wide enough to have my audio monitors on each end, and i could easily fit two computer monitors between them (only have one now). it is a bit low (about 30") so it might not be high enough to fit some chairs with arms under it. they did have some that were taller though, and lots with different shelves and things (that looked to be about the right size for rack units actually). if you have an ikea near by, you might want to check it out.

+1 to that.

I actually have this desk:

http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/p...113/#/S69806816

Which I built a 3-space, 14" (deep) rack to sit on top of it.

I also have the roll out drawer unit, which if you have a lot of rack stuff, would be be a great place to put a studio rack, instead (I use the drawers to house all my mics and cables that I don't use often).

Here's an older picture of it:



I now have the studio monitors on stands to the side, and the desk is pulled out a bit more from the window. I also have a floor rack to the left of the desk that I moved all my pres into and plan to fill with compressors and more pres. All that's in my desk rack right now is my Sansamp RBI, 48 point patchbay, a Furman PL-Plus and my SSL Alphalink AX. I'll probably put a 4 channel headphone amp under the RBI at some point, too.

I'm also running 2 24" monitors now, with plenty of room to spare, still. Since my keyboard and mouse are on a pull-out drawer under the desk, I have tons of room on the top of the desk for MIDI keyboards (or in my case... a crap ton of papers and software boxes that pile up monthly before I put them away)
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Old 05-05-2013, 06:22 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by axemanchris
I know of a business here in Canada that builds custom studio furniture. That's probably not very helpful, though.

CT

Do they ship to the US? Couldn't hurt to link, I suppose.

I've been looking at shop who offers custom builds as well.
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Old 05-05-2013, 06:59 PM   #10
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MatrixClaw: that's a really nice solution. I think that might be my best bet actually. Will consult you on the rack shelving.

I never really considered using rack gear, but I guess now's a good time as any to make the jump.
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Old 05-05-2013, 07:51 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Xiaoxi
MatrixClaw: that's a really nice solution. I think that might be my best bet actually. Will consult you on the rack shelving.

I never really considered using rack gear, but I guess now's a good time as any to make the jump.

Yeah, it works nicely for what I need.

I was planning on building a custom desk myself with angled racks built into the top of it, but really the only reason I would've done that would've been for aesthetics and the Ikea desk with a custom rack on top just ended up being a MUCH cheaper option I poured all the cash I saved into building some epic looking acoustic panels, instead

I WAS thinking about getting an Argosy desk at one point though. They look so sleek and pretty. It came with a Digidesign Control 24 for cheaper than just what the desk would've cost, but Avid dropped support on the Control 24 on their recent Pro Tools releases and the desk would be worthless without it (or at least look really funny...), since they build their desks to custom fit certain setups.
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Old 05-05-2013, 08:12 PM   #12
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I'm actually not a fan of the Argosy style stations because they're a little TOO modern. Doesn't blend well with a home environment. And most of them are not friendly for dual monitors in a certain way...they'd have to be put really far away or on the side. I want them upfront. And aesthetics is a BIG deal for me I'm a stickler for everything looking really clean, beautiful, minimal, and super efficient.

And after further thinking about this, I think I've nailed down exactly what I need:

show


That's Jason Graves' studio. See how he has the screens + keyboard + peripherals all on one level? That's exactly how I want it. I discovered that he actually has the keyboard flushmounted into the desk so that it's not sticking out too high. I'll have to think of a similar solution.

And then maybe separate rack shelving on each far end corners to put audio monitors on.

I've been talking to a friend of mine who apparently does carpentry. Hopefully this can come together in a month or two.

What do you think?
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Old 05-06-2013, 11:02 AM   #13
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It looks like a great space solution.

I'd second-guess putting monitors on the desk, though. Taking mine off the desk and putting them on stands made a big difference to me.

If you're going to build one, maybe just cut the outside corners off at 45 degrees to make space for stands to come up behind the corners?

CT
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Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

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Quote:
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Old 05-06-2013, 02:35 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by axemanchris
I'd second-guess putting monitors on the desk, though. Taking mine off the desk and putting them on stands made a big difference to me.

I've heard some stuff about monitors on desk vs stands before, but it's all pretty vague to me. What are your reasons?

Keep in mind, like MatrixClaw, I pad the monitors with the Aurelex base to prevent any sound from carrying into the desk. I haven't really seen anything that claims putting them on desks affect the acoustics. Plus many studios have monitors on the shelf...
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Old 05-06-2013, 02:57 PM   #15
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The Auralex pads seem okay, but are, apparently, not ideal. The desk will still resonate with the monitors - just not as much.

Lots of studios also place monitors on their sides, but there is a ton of literature that suggests not to.

I don't know why they do anyways.

CT
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Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

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Quote:
Originally Posted by firehawk
Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
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Old 05-06-2013, 03:01 PM   #16
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http://studioone.presonus.com/downl...ce%20Manual.pdf

Sections 4.2 and 4.6.4 and 7.2.7 and 12.1.1 seem to be the relevant sections.

CT
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Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

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Old 05-06-2013, 03:12 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by axemanchris
The Auralex pads seem okay, but are, apparently, not ideal. The desk will still resonate with the monitors - just not as much.

Lots of studios also place monitors on their sides, but there is a ton of literature that suggests not to.

I don't know why they do anyways.

CT

Not that I'm against stands, but I'm not too interested in them right now for space / aesthetic reasons. Without any solid documentation for why desk placement should be avoided, I don't think it'll be necessary for now. Cutting the corners are a good idea though. I'll consider specifying that to the carpenter so I have that option in the future.

And I think they lay the monitors on the side for leveling purposes. Often on top of consoles, higher shelves, etc, the tweeter might be too high and miss the head height of the listener.
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