Jarvis Desk review

Decked in bamboo and ultra quiet, the Jarvis standing desk rises above competitors

Jarvis Standing Bamboo Desk hero

Jarvis Desk

“The Jarvis Desk forgoes unnecessary perks to create an affordable combination of the traditional desk and the technological advancements of modern day standing desks.”
  • Well-built and holds up against normal wear-and-tear
  • Classic aesthetic that largely hides any indications of its electronic capabilities
  • Variable height
  • Affordably priced
  • Memory settings for quick adjustments
  • Slightly wobbly when at a standing height
  • Emits a slight hum during elevation changes
  • Does nothing more than an traditional desk other than variable height
MSRP $470.00

Considering it’s among the oldest forms of furniture — essentially a plank held up with four legs — the traditional desk is long overdue for a technological makeover. Enter the standing desk, which has been shown to decrease numerous health problems correlated with prolonged sitting.

The Jarvis Desk by San Francisco- and Portland-based Fully is among the growing affordable options for motorized standing desks. We tested the Jarvis Bamboo Standing Desk ($470), but Fully offers a suite of similar desk styles that come equipped with the same basic electronically driven “frame” — two wide-base support legs controlled by a switch mounted to the desk.

The Jarvis Bamboo Standing Desk is a slight upgrade from the basic model, which uses a flat laminated desktop and costs $40 less. Our model offers a sleeker, environmentally friendly desktop complete with a beveled edge that allows the arms to rest easily while working.

Unpacking

The Jarvis Desk arrived in a set of packages with some assembly required, but anyone who’s built unassembled furniture should have little challenge putting it all together. The complete build took about an hour and a half, but that time would’ve been shortened if we’d had an electric drill on-hand to replace the necessary elbow grease required for our manual screwdriver.

Jarvis Standing Bamboo Desk corner
Bill Roberson/Digital Trends
Bill Roberson/Digital Trends

Our desktop measured in at 60 inches by 30, which offered plenty of space to stretch out our office equipment, including a 27-inch all-in-one computer, phone, random accessories, coffee cups, several piles of papers and notepads, and room to spare.

The first aspect we noticed of the Jarvis Desk is its aesthetic appeal. Despite being largely an electronic device, the Jarvis Desk fits in assumingly with an office filled with traditional wooden desks. The bamboo desktop is sleek and professional, and the desk as a whole gives no indications of its technological capabilities to the untrained eye. But the under-the-hood equipment is where the Jarvis Desk shines.

Rising up

The primary means of operation begins and ends with a seven-button switch connected to the central electronic controller — a power pack that plugs into an outlet and controls the elevation of the legs. It’s a simple, elegant method to adjust height on the fly and is a largely inconspicuous desk attachment, set underneath the right or left side and meant to sit flush with the desk’s vertical edge.

The Jarvis Desk fits in assumingly with an office filled with traditional wooden desks.

Buttons etched with arrows pointing up or down control the elevation, while four other buttons allow memory presets. A seventh button allows memorization of these settings on the fly. A digital readout shows the desk’s current elevation – from 24.3 to 50.3 inches. The four-button memory system lets you easily bring the desk to your favorite position without holding down a button and dialing it in every time. Simply push one of the preset buttons once and the desk automatically adjusts into the position. Grabbing a glass of water and plan to stand upon your return? Simply push the respective button for the Jarvis Desk to rise into position and it’ll be ready when you come back. Our timed tests showed it takes just shy of 20 seconds for the Jarvis Desk to go from the lowest setting to highest and vice versa.

The desk became noticeably more wobbly the higher it rose, but the issue was minor at worst and never negatively affected our work. After a day with the Jarvis, we didn’t consciously notice any wobbling while working.

The desk emits a slight hum as it rises and falls, but the sound is minor enough that nearby coworkers didn’t mind.

After nearly two months with the Jarvis Desk that include countless cups of coffee set atop it, as well as snacks, dart gun wars, spills, and other normal usage, we haven’t noticed any damage or stains to the desk, suggesting it can hold up to long-term wear and tear.

Jarvis Desk = UpLift?

We’d be remiss to not bring the UpLift into the conversation when reviewing the Jarvis Desk. We have an UpLift on-hand for review and noticed during assembly that its frame is made up of the same components. More importantly, the prices are the same as that of the Jarvis Desk — the basic laminated model for either desk is $639. The frame-only model of either desk is $489. The return policies are the same: up to 30 days. Essentially, comparing these two desks from a mechanical and financial standpoint is an issue of splitting hairs.

The desk became noticeably more wobbly the higher it rose.

We can vouch for the Jarvis Desk’s bamboo model ($679) as a sleeker quality to that of the UpLift’s laminated base model. The bamboo has a better feel, a cleaner appearance, and a beveled edge that helps draw your arms into a relaxed, comfortable position–especially when standing.

The UpLift doesn’t offer a similar option. Its smallest jump in upgraded desktops bumps the price from $639 to $979 for the “reclaimed wood” tabletop. However, there are a number of different varieties of desks offered by either company. Your decision between the two may be best made by finding the options or desktops you prefer.

Conclusion

The DT Accessory Pack

Up your game and the get the most out of your gear with the following extras, hand-picked by our editors:

Herman Miller Embody Chair ($1,429)

Rolodex Supply Caddy ($11)

Victor Technology Steppie Balance Board ($100)

The Jarvis Desk is one of the best standing desk options on the market. We’ve seen traditional desks of lesser build and aesthetic quality for hundreds of dollars more than the Jarvis Desk, and those lack the ability to change elevation on the fly. Simply put, the Jarvis Bamboo Standing Desk is an excellent purchase at $679 (or $639 for the base model).

However, it’s a largely no-frills desk. It resembles the appearance of its traditional brethren and offers the ability to elevate to varying heights — and little else. But while it lacks some of the quirks of its competition such as a dry-erase surface like the UpDesk UpWrite, ultimately its inconspicuous practicality is exactly what makes it an ideal standing desk.

Highs

  • Well-built and holds up against normal wear-and-tear
  • Classic aesthetic that largely hides any indications of its electronic capabilities
  • Variable height
  • Affordably priced
  • Memory settings for quick adjustments

Lows

  • Slightly wobbly when at a standing height
  • Emits a slight hum during elevation changes
  • Does nothing more than an traditional desk other than variable height

Editors' Recommendations