The Best Monitor Arms of 2018


Ryan Fiorenzi the authorResearch by Ryan Fiorenzi
Updated September 25, 2018

What are Monitor Arms?

Monitors are great ergonomic office accessories that give you improved range of adjustment in positioning your screen for optimal comfort. They typically attach to the back of your desk with a screw down clamp. They are commonly available in 1, 2, 3 and even some options for 4 monitors. monitor arms make a great pairing with a standing desk where you are more likely to adjust your monitor position between sitting and standing.

Why get Monitor Arms for your desk?

Single or dual desktop monitor arms serve 4 main functions:

  1. Get your monitors eye-level whether you're sitting, standing, or leaning, reducing the strain on your upper back, neck, and eyes.
  2. Open up space on your desktop.
  3. Save you time by keeping multiple browser windows or items open at the same time.
  4. Monitor several items at once such as stock market charts, security cams, or games.

Our Criteria for Selecting the Best Monitor Arms

Below you'll find that we arrived at our top choices by extensive testing and reviewing. All of the monitor arms that made it into our top choices have the following characteristics:

  • Sturdy (the monitors don't wobble as you type).
  • Move multidirectionally (up/down, forward/back, you can tilt the screen, and you can rotate the screens from vertical to horizontal.
  • Most of the brands offer single as well as dual monitor arms.
  • VESA compliant (the standard mounting surface for monitors, tvs, and other displays). So make sure your monitors are VESA compliant if you're going to purchase any of these monitor arms. Apple monitors aren't VESA compliant; you need to purchase an adapter (available on amazon).

Top Monitor Arms For 2018

We understand that you may be looking for something particular with your monitor arm setup. While some may be concerned with looks, others may be more budget conscious. Each shopper is different so we've decided to choose monitor arms based on the following categories:

#1 – Amazon
Basics Monitor Arm

Amazon Basics Monitor Arm - Best Monitor Arms

“Best Overall Value”

  • Great value for the price
  • Arms are made of aluminum with matte black finish
  • Each arm will hold up to 20 lbs
  • Designed to be used with any desk up to 2.6″ thick
  • Works with monitors 27″ or smaller
  • One-year warranty
  • Wire management system is not great

#2 – Fleximounts Monitor Arm

Fleximounts Monitor Arm -  - Best Monitor Arms

“Best Budget Monitor Arm”

  • Half the price of the Amazon Basics and Varidesk models
  • Works with monitors 27″ or smaller
  • Designed to be used with any desk up to 4.72″ thick
  • Holds just over half the weight (up to 11 lbs) of Varidesk and Amazon Basics (which hold up to 20 lbs)
  • Maximum adjustable height of 15.7 inches (Varidesk and Amazon Basics are over 23)

#3 – Varidesk Monitor Arm

Varidesk Monitor Arm -  - Best Monitor Arms

“Best Dual Monitor Arm”

  • Innovative and high end design
  • Holds up to 19.8 lbs on each arm
  • Great customer service
  • Great wire management hides cables
  • Designed to be used with any desk up to 2″ thick
  • 30 day guarantee
  • The clamp to the desk and base arms are made of aluminum, the arms that connect to the monitors are part plastic

#4 – Ergotron LX Monitor Arm

Ergotron LX Monitor Arm - Best Monitor Arms

“Best Ergonomics and Range of Adjustment”

  • Excellent range of motion and great for tall people
  • Very similar in design to Amazon Basics
  • 10-year warranty
  • Can adjust up to 25″ above the desktop (Varidesk and Amazon raise the monitor 23″)
  • Works with monitors 24″ or smaller
  • Slightly more expensive than Amazon Basics

#5 – Loctek Dual Stacking Arm

Loctek Dual Stacking Arm - Best Monitor Arms

“Best For Stacking Monitors”

  • Same multidirectional movement options that you have with the other top models, but you can stack these directly on top of eachother (the other models cannot do this)
  • Supports monitors up to 20 lbs.
  • Works with monitors 27″ or smaller
  • Easy assembly
  • The most expensive of our top choices

Compare Top Monitor Arms 2018

Use the table below to compare out top choices for monitor arms. The max arm height, outward extension and arm capacity are the biggest things to consider when making a decision.

Stat definitions and tips:

  • Max Arm Height (inches) - This is the max height that the arm will rise. This can be particularity important to you if you have a tall upper body, a desk that is lower than average or a non-adjustable height office chair. If these apply to you, you should seek a monitor arm that has a high max arm height.
  • Max Outward Extension (inches) - This is the distance the monitor can extend forward from its base. If you have a very deep desk such as 40" or more in depth, you will likely want an arm that extends forward fairly far to compensate for the desk depth.
  • Max Arm Capacity (pounds) - This is the maximum the arm is designed to support with stability. Monitor's arms are sprung with an intended weight in mind so consider the weight of your monitors when making a decision.

Best Monitor Arms 2018 Stats Comparison
Arm Max
Arm
Height
Max
Outward
Extension
Max
Arm
Capacity
Price
USD
Amazon Basics 13" 25" 25 lbs $99
Fleximounts Arm 15.75" 20" 11 lbs $39
Varidesk Dual 12" 29" 19.8 lbs $195
Ergotron LX 13" 25" 25 lbs $200
Loctek Stacking 23.5" 17.7" 19.8 lbs $229

Resources Related to Monitor Arms

Use the following resources when setting up your monitor arms to ensure good ergonomics and avoiding back or neck pain mistakes:

  • Proper Workplace Ergonomics - when setting up your monitor arms, refer to this guide on how to properly position your body, your keyboard and your monitor to minimize stress on your back neck and joints.
  • Preventing Back Pain - If you're looking for monitor arms there is a chance you're suffering from back or neck pain. Here are 17 things you can do to prevent it.
  • Improving Your Posture - Monitor arms can help you improve or maintain a good posture, here are 31 more ways you can improve it.
  • Understanding Back Pain and Sitting - Back pain is one of the most common complaints among Americans, especially those of us that spend considerable time at desk. Learn how sitting causes back pain and what you can do to correct it.

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Comments

  1. I have stands on both of my monitors. In which cases is it worth the investment to get full monitor arms? thank you

    1. Great question Amelia!

      We recommend using a monitor arm when your monitor doesn’t align properly with your eyes. Most monitor stands hold the monitor too low. This causes unnecessary neck and eye strain. By bringing the monitors to a proper height, you can reduce those issues. For more information on proper desk ergonomics, see our guide here: https://www.startstanding.org/proper-workplace-ergonomics/

      Hope this helps!

  2. Hello,
    could you tell me the vertical tilt (+ x° / – x°) of the VARIDESK Monitor Arm?

    Thank you

    1. Hi Alessandro, while Varidesk doesn’t provide a specific ° value, they do advertise a “360° pivot”. It has a very high range of adjustment due to the ball-joint style design near the VESA plate.

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