Aussie Active Desk Review
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In this review, we cover the line of manual sit-stand desks from Aussie Active Desks that have been smartly designed for the classroom environment.
The Bottom Line:
Aussie Active Desks has achieved the right mix of simplicity, affordability and durability that propels their manual standing desks as a clear standout for Australian schools. Primary and secondary students will benefit from the working and studying flexibility that these desks provide on a daily basis.
Whilst these manual sit-stand desks provide great value for money as classroom standing desks, their applications elsewhere are fairly limited. If you are looking for a more permanent office space solution, then you should consider one of the more functional height-adjustable desks from Ikea or the Artiss sit-stand desk. They provide much more desk surface, better load capacities for full-size monitor screens, and are electrically powered.
Who Should Buy An Aussie Active Desk?
Primary and secondary Australian schools that value enhanced learning and the well-being of their students will appreciate the simple but innovative benefits that Aussie Active Desks offers. Schools are clearly the target audience where junior and senior standing desks can be wholesale purchased at discounted prices. However, the use cases for their manual sit-stand desks are not limited to classrooms. Their affordable prices, easy set up and use will make them desirable pieces of kids’ furniture for the home or hospitality environments.
Pros and Cons
- Cheap and affordable.
- Innovative and simple design – fewer moving parts.
- Removable tote trays that can be easily washed.
- Not suitable for computers besides laptops.
- Will be outgrown by high-school students.
- The under-desk drawers are not designed to hold a lot of weight.
|$297 – $429
|Place of Manufacture
|Manual standing desk
|7 years, 1 year for whiteboard desktops
Aussie Desk Compared and Alternatives
What We Liked:
Considering the target audience of Aussie Active Desks, these are the aspects we liked.
- 100% Australian-owned and operated company that utilises local materials and manufactures. Rather than outsource manufacturing overseas, there is a level of appreciation for supporting local businesses.
- Purpose-built standing desks for students that come at an affordable price (with discounts for bulk purchases).
- The Aussie Active Desks story is one of problem-solving, supporting your local community, and entrepreneurship. Australians who prefer to buy local will appreciate this.
What We Didn’t Like:
Here are some of the cons of Aussie Active desks.
- The desktop can only be adjusted at 60mm intervals and doesn’t provide the level of height customisability compared to other standing desks like the Varidesk and Zen Space standing desks we’ve reviewed.
- The desks are too small to fit a computer monitor or monitor arms (but suitable for laptops).
- Adjusting the height may be challenging for one child to perform. Two is best.
What Is Aussie Active Desks?
Based in Bells Creek, Queensland, Aussie Active Desks Pty Ltd is a 100% Australian-owned and operated small business that manufactures affordable manual standing desks for primary and secondary students. The company is operated by Gavin and Jocelyn, a mum and dad team who saw an opportunity to support Australian schools to provide classroom environments where students have access to the benefits of a standing desk.
Aussie Active Desks is a licensee of Australian Made which certifies them as a provider of Australian-sourced materials that are manufactured in Australia. In fact, the company was awarded “Highly Commended for putting Queenslanders first” at the 2021 Buy Queensland Supplier Awards.
My Thoughts On Aussie Active Desks
A simple but highly functional design
All desks from Aussie Active Desks are manually operated with no electric components involved. However, given the intended commercial audience of schools, this comes as no surprise since well-built, reliable, and cost-effective products would be preferred. The simplicity of their manual desks offers advantages over electric sit-stand desks.
The removable tote tray that slides in under the desk is a simple but effective way of providing additional storage space for books, writing tools, and other items that kids may commonly use throughout the day. Made from durable plastic, you can easily slide it out and wash it which makes it ideal for classrooms, art studios, or home environments where spills and messes are likely to occur.
All standing desks from Aussie Active are easily adjusted using its patented Multi-Indexing Plunger. Since a standard crank handle is not required (and is harder for children to use), the multiple height adjustment settings can be used to easily find the ideal stand desk height.
High-quality build and construction
Aussie Active Desks are openly transparent with the quality of materials used in the construction of their products. Firstly, their desks are not manufactured abroad. Instead, they utilise a local manufacturing company in Queensland that has a strong track record of building quality educational products for over 40 years for the hotel, hospitality and education sectors.
Desks are manufactured to international construction standards and tested to satisfy the requirements of AS/NZS 4610.1:2020 – Furniture – School and educational, Part 1: Tables – Strength, durability and stability. The quality of workmanship that goes into each desk has enabled Aussie Active to become an approved supplier for various government departments due to its AS/NZS/ISO 9002 accreditation.
Moreover, no harsh chemicals or treatment processes are involved with the construction of its desks. Heavy metals such as cadmium, and chromium, as well as pesticides, are not used at any stage. The timber used in construction is responsibly sourced from Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) approved vendors.
Plenty of colours to choose from
With 24 desktop colours to choose from, the choice is simply amazing and is a lot more than the top-standing desk brands offer. However, the real innovation comes from the white sheen desktop which also acts as a whiteboard. I was quite impressed by this genius idea and it is perfect for school classrooms where creativity is promoted.
With prices for individual desks starting between $297 – $429 (without the tote tray), Aussie Active offers a more than affordable working solution for the classroom. In comparison to sit-stand desks from Artiss which produces no-fuss setups that are suitable standing desks for kids, Aussie Active comes out much cheaper by over $250. Of course, the important thing to note is the two desks are completely different in size, quality, and purpose, however, if these don’t matter much then it’s worth saving the money and buying from Aussie Active.
Being marketed for school classrooms (but also applicable in other environments), the cost of an Aussie Active adjustable standing desk doesn’t have the finish or features that you would expect from a premium desk we’ve reviewed such as the UpDown PRO, XDesk Encore, or Desky Dual. What you pay is what you get, but Aussie Active delivers extremely well for the price tag. Simply put, you’re going to have a hard time finding a better-priced standing desk that is children-friendly.
Ease Of Use
All sit-stand desks from Aussie Active Desks are designed to be operated by primary and secondary school kids. The high ease of use that their desks provide is enabled by the simplicity of their design. There are no heavy crank handles in which to adjust the height nor stick out from the desk which can prove annoying. Changing the elevation of the desktop can be done in a matter of seconds.
Although Aussie Active desks are not designed nor have the space to house a full-size monitor and computer, they are ideal workstations for kids to complete their work on a laptop. However, there are no built-in features or accessories to buy to assist with cable management. Instead, you’re going to have to get creative with velcro straps or clips to ensure the power cable is neatly tucked away. Using a wireless keyboard and mouse will also help to organise the desk.
Aussie Active Desks offers a limited 7-year warranty from the date of purchase on their range of manual standing desks which covers against “faulty workmanship in relation to fair wear and tear”. This is actually very competitive compared to manual-crank desks and can be attributed to its simple yet robust design. The exception lies with the White Sheen whiteboard desktop which only has a 12-month warranty.
We were unable to find third-party reviews of Aussie Active Desks on Trustpilot, Product Review, and Google. This is of no surprise since the clientele for the Queensland local business primarily comprises primary and secondary schools.
Final Thoughts On Aussie Active Desks
It is clear that Aussie Active Desks provide a purpose-built product that ticks all the boxes for primary and secondary students. Affordable, simple, and durable enough to withstand the rigours of a classroom environment, the use cases of these manual sit-stand desks are not necessarily limited to the classroom. They are a sound option for the home environment for people on a budget.
However, their simplistic design is not likely to appeal to all parents who have kids at home. For those that prefer a larger desktop with a higher load capacity, the real estate to install monitor arms, or the convenience of programming a digital controller for height adjustment, Aussie Active won’t be for you.
|3 / 5
|4 / 5
|4 / 5
|3.5 / 5
|Value for money
|4.3 / 5