Over the last few weeks, I've been reviewing a top of the range L-shaped standing desk from FlexiSpot. I've reviewed a handful of FlexiSpot desks over the last year, all of which were of the non-L-shaped variety and absolutely fantastic. However, deep down, I've always been a corner desk kind of person, but I was never able to find a good one that could also stand. That was until FlexiSpot came along.
So, here's my review of the FlexiSpot E1L, a standing corner desk!
Bottom line: The E1L is a great corner standing desk from a high-quality company designing quiet, fast, and easy to use electronic desks.
- Anit-collision system
- Minimalist design
- Quiet motor
- A little expensive
- Noticeable divide in the desktop
- Setup can be tricky if not paying attention
FlexiSpot E1L design and features
The E1L features the same great frame design as FlexiSpots other top of the range desks, with squared off feet and an anti-collision system built right in. The setup process is somewhat straight forward, though I found myself reading over the instructions a few times just to make sure I had things orientated the correct way when joining the two halves of the frame together.
One of the nit-picks I had with the E5 and E6 was with the design of the control panel that allows you to raise and lower the desk. I found it to be a little ugly with a massive FlexiSpot logo plastered on the front. With the E1L, the control panel design has been updated significantly and it now looks MUCH better. It features a gloss finish and a more minimalistic design than the old one. I love it.
Just like the E5 and E6, the E1L also features the ability to save up to three different heights that can be accessed at the tap of a button. It also has a built-in alarm system that you can enable which will remind you when to stand after X amount of time. I've personally never used the alarm feature, but the memory feature is great and I use it all the time for going between standing and sitting.
The desk is nice and quiet when raising and lowering, but I've found the anti-collision system to be a little finicky at times. When lowering the desk, it'll sometimes think it's hit something and stop, even if it hasn't. After tightening a few bolts and making sure the feet were aligned straight, the issue appears to have stopped, but it's something I thought was worth mentioning.
Unfortunately, unlike with the E5 and E6, the E1L doesn't include a built-in cable management system. I'm not sure why FlexiSpot opted to omit this with the L-shaped desk, as there's plenty of room underneath to have one built in. So I've had to resort to a third party cable management tray that I installed myself and works plenty fine.
FlexiSpot E1L desktop and ergonomics
Just like with FexiSpot's other desk frames, you can choose to include one of FlexiSpot's own desktops for an additional cost. The E1L has three different desktop colors to choose from, including white, black, and maple. I went with the white tabletop which goes nicely with the black E1L frame. In the preview photos on FlexiSpot's website, it looks like the desktop is all one piece of wood, but it isn't.
In reality, the desktop from FlexiSpot for the E1L is actually two pieces of wood that you join together yourself when assembling the desk. This allows for you to choose which way the L shape goes, as you can configure the two halves of the desk in whichever way you like.
On paper, this makes sense, and I know that. But in reality, I was a little disappointed in this way of doing things. I was hoping the L desk was going to a single piece of wood that I could orientate by turning it upside down, as that would make the desk feel more sturdy and seamless. But the E1L desktop is two pieces, with pre-drilled screw holes underneath so you can attach it to the legs easily.
My only real complaint about this way of things is that it can be a little trickly to align the two halves perfectly. After multiple attempts, I got the two halves to be level with each other, but there's still a notable "divide" that your hand, arm or mouse pointer is going to notice when moving across the desk.
There's two easy fixes for this; either supply your own desk top, or buy a mouse mat and lay it over where the divide is, which is what I've done. Other than that, the desktop itself is perfectly high quality. You can get it in two sizes: 160x100cm or 180x120cm, with pricing starting at £140.
In regards to ergonomics, the only complaint I have is that the desk doesn't go low enough for my sitting height. The E5 and E6 can go as low as 62cm, but the E1L's lowest possible height is 71cm. This just means I have to raise my chair slightly to feel comfortable when sitting, but it's still a little annoying. The E1L's maximum height is 120cm, which is also 5cm shorter than the E6 125cm maximum height.
This is because the E1L features a two-stage motor, and not a three-stage motor as found on the E6. More stages means the desk frame can extend further, but that's about it when it comes to benefits over a two-stage motor.
The big benefit having a corner desk is being able to make the most of a tight space. My home office isn't very big, so being able to dedicate an entire corner to my work set up allows for much more room for desk related activities. On my E5 and E6, I only had room for my desktop and maybe a laptop on the side, but with a corner desk, I have room for the desktop, and up to three other laptops if I needed to have them all running at the same time.
With corner desks, I like to sit in the "corner" of the desk as it makes me feel closer to the things I'm working on. I can rest my arms on the area that surrounds me when sitting up against the corner, and I feel more productive as a result. You can also sit facing the long piece and have the corner bit act as additional desk space, but I like to make the most of the entire desk.
Although it's an L-shaped desk, overall it's incredibly sturdy. This is because the frame is designed in an "S" shape which cleverly allows the legs to support the longer L side evenly. I would even go so far to say this desk feels more sturdy than a standard standing desk because of that extra foot length for the side that sticks out.
Should you buy the FlexiSpot E1L?
Overall, I really love the FlexiSpot E1L. It's my favorite FlexiSpot desk to date, giving me plenty of room to have all my different test PCs running at the same time. I am a little disappointed that this desk doesn't come with a built-in cable management system, but that's something that you can easily rectify yourself.
I would prefer if the desktop you can order from FlexiSpot came in an optional "single-piece" unit in addition to the two-piece setup they currently offer. Some people will prefer it this way, but I definitely would've preferred a desktop without the split down the middle.
Will I be replacing my E6 with the E1L? Absolutely! Even though the E6 technically has a newer desk frame, there's really not much difference between them outside of not having a built-in cable management system. The two-stage/three-stage motor is a non-issue for most people, and the E1L is just as sturdy and quiet as the other desks from FlexiSpot I've tested. The additional desktop space makes it all worth it.
I do think it's one of the best standing desks you can buy if you're looking specifically for a corner desk. That said, if you're not in need of a corner desk and can settle for a regular desktop, the FlexiSpot E6 is absolutely fantastic and is the desk I recommend you buy instead.
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