Whether you work in an office, at home, or somewhere in between, technology likely plays an important role in your workday. If you’re feeling like your office could use a bit of a gadget tune-up, or if you are looking for new ways to improve the comfort, productivity, and overall flow of your current workspace configuration, we have some recommendations for you.
Although it might seem like a small detail, the quality of your mouse can make or break the comfort and efficiency of your workflow. An ergonomic mouse is your best bet for mitigating the wrist strain and arm fatigue associated with overuse. Many mice are equipped with additional buttons that can be programmed to complete repetitive tasks quickly. Here are two mice we consider must-haves if you're looking for improved comfort and efficiency.
Best Value: ASUS TUF Gaming M3 Wired Mouse
The aptly named and reasonably priced TUF Gaming M3 Mouse from ASUS sports seven programmable buttons to customize your work (or gaming) experience to your liking. The molded body and lightweight handling help alleviate the wrist strain commonly associated with a traditional flat mouse. The outer shell has been optimized for extended use and is tough against elements like friction and perspiration.
- Seven programmable buttons
- Lightweight and ergonomic design
- Tough against abrasion, friction, and perspiration
- Stylish body and RGB lighting capable
This mouse also supports RGB lighting if you are looking to make your workspace more colorful. Compatible with Armoury II, it can be further customized with profiles for specific workflows via this driver-based software.
Best Overall: Logitech MX Master 3S Wireless Mouse
As someone who regularly gifts the Logitech MX Master 3S to friends and family, it goes without saying this mouse is one of my favorite office accessories. Sporting a mild tilt and thumb rest, the MX Master 3S's textured grip subtly yields to your thumb pad and palm for maximum comfort. Ultra-quiet clicks work in tandem with a wheel that delivers tactile feedback as you scroll for elevated flow.
In terms of customization, the MX Master 3S features 7 programmable buttons (including its scroll wheel), which can be customized using the free Logi Options+ software. Speaking of the wheel: the MX Master 3S features Logitech's proprietary MagSpeed scroller, which offers precise, blistering-fast scrolling up to 1000 lines per second.
- Quiet Click buttons.
- Fast and precise MagSpeed scroll wheel.
- Customizable workflow with Logi Options+.
- Bluetooth and Logi Bolt connectivity.
The MX Master 3S works with Windows 10/11, macOS, and most other operating systems. The Logi Options+ software enables mice customization including tuning the scrolling speed and programming button functions. With the ability to connect via Bluetooth or the Logi Bolt receiver, this mouse is easy to transport between work and home if you find yourself not wanting to work a day without it.
Like mice, keyboards can make a big difference in your productivity levels and comfort. If you are looking for a keyboard upgrade, consider these two options.
Best Value: Microsoft Ergonomic Keyboard
A perfect accompaniment to the Ergonomic Mouse, the Microsoft Ergonomic Keyboard features a split layout design and built-in fabric palm rest to accommodate more natural hand positions and better wrist posture while typing.
- Fabric-covered wrist cushions.
- Built-in shortcuts and other customizable features via software.
- Supports Windows 11 Home/Pro.
Wrist strain and injury might sound silly if you have never suffered from it, but after years of use, these injuries can deeply impact your overall productivity and general comfort. Investing in an office accessory that can help prevent injuries or mitigate current wrist damage is worth it, especially with a solid budget accessory like the Microsoft Ergonomic Keyboard.
Best Overall: ASUS ROG Strix Scope RX Backlit Mechanical Keyboard
As far as perfect pairs are concerned, the ASUS ROG Strix Scope RX Backlit Mechanical Keyboard will round out your setup if you are considering the brand’s mouse option, as well. However, this also works great as a solo keyboard.
- Blue switches with a firm and clicky feel for tactile input
- Onboard memory and hotkeys that allow you to choose between six user profiles, five of which are custom
- Several functions useful for working and gaming alike
Outfitted with Blue optical switches, typing on this keyboard has a satisfying, clicky feel. Optimized for gaming, this keyboard has a stealth key for instantly hiding apps and muting audio, as well as an enlarged control key that is easier to hit. Also notable is the quick-toggle switch that easily swaps profiles to work or play. Designed to withstand extended use, stylish, and functional, this is a great everyday keyboard that also makes an excellent gaming keyboard.
Building a PC isn’t always a feasible option for everyone. If you are working in a demanding field like finance, engineering, or graphic design, among others, it can be tricky to find one that will keep up with the programs for your industry. Desktops and workstations are great options for those who want to circumvent the building process, and we have a few in mind that will do the trick and last a while.
Best Value: Lenovo ThinkCentre M70q Gen 3 Tiny Desktop Computer
Generally, you can expect to pay a bit more for a workstation, but Lenovo offers a variety of differently priced systems for different applications, so we suggest checking them out if you are looking for something more specific. Of their options, the ThinkCentre M70q Gen 3 Tiny Desktop Computer is a solid middle ground option.
- Compact design can fit virtually anywhere
- Ideal for office, healthcare, and retail environments
- Strong, reliable performance with good multitasking abilities
This system utilizes the combined power of its 2.2 GHz Intel® Core™ i3 quad-core processor with a 128GB M.2 NVMe PCIe solid-state drive to keep things running smoothly. Offering plenty of peripheral support with a multitude of input and output options, the M70q Gen 3 Tiny is versatile and will work for many kinds of configurations.
Best Overall: Dell Precision 7865 Tower Workstation
If you’re looking for a workhorse and consistent performance, Dell’s Precision 7865 Tower Workstation is an option worth investigating. While it has been designed to execute demanding tasks pertaining to design, architecture, and video editing, it can be a suitable everyday system for less involved projects, as well.
- Can quickly load and multitask a variety of demanding applications
- Great peripheral support
- Optimized for quick and reliable performance
This system is equipped with a 4.1 GHz AMD Ryzen Threadripper PRO 5945WX 12-Core processor, 32GB of 3200 MHz DDR4 memory, and a fast 1TB PCIe 4.0 x4 M.2 SSD. Designed to make quick, easy work of demanding tasks, the Precision 7865 Tower Workstation utilizes AI to tailor a workflow around your usage. It is used to wake up your workstation before use, prioritize different apps, and even adjust for background noise during those important conference calls. As far as efficiency goes, this system is definitely one to consider for your at-home tech environment.
Uninterruptable Power Supply (UPS)
Of course, no office space is truly efficient if it experiences brownouts, voltage spikes, and other anomalies. If you're looking to safeguard your costly office equipment against these and similar hazards, an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) is a worthy investment. We have two in mind if you are looking to protect your gear.
Best Value: CyberPower CP1500PFCLCD
Featuring an absurdly high 1500 VA load capacity, reliable battery backup, and protections against just about every type of electrical hazard or interference, the CP1500PFCLCD PFC Sinewave UPS from CyberPower is our pick for the best value UPS.
- Supplies power long enough for equipment to properly shut down when utility power fails
- Surge protection diverts excess voltage away from sensitive equipment during a spike
- LCD panel displays easy-to-read metrics
This UPS can be completely recharged in around 8 hours and features 12 power outlets, 6 of which are equipped with battery and surge protection, while the other 6 only have surge protection. The device guarantees protection for all your peripherals, with the ability to prioritize your gear that will require battery protection during power anomalies.
Most importantly, it will keep all your devices powered for up to 2.5 minutes after a power failure, giving you ample time to save your work and shut down your peripherals properly. It is overall an excellent device for insuring your home office protection while providing you peace of mind.
Best Overall: CyberPower CPS1500AVR
While CyberPower is great for uninterrupted power supply, its CPS1500AVR Smart App Equipped Uninterrupted Power Supply takes the cake. This option differs from our value option in several ways, including its number of outlets, run time, and flexibility. Offering different outputs and kinds of outlets, this is a great option if you are looking for a UPS that can be tailored more to your specific needs.
- Eight battery- and surge-protected outlets with 900 watts of power
- Up to seven minutes of run time at full load
- Included software provides tools for monitoring and managing the UPS and backup power
While it offers the same VA as our best value option, this product has a few key differences that could make it more friendly for your setup. The first, and most important, is the run time during an outage. Whereas our value option can provide 2.5 minutes of power when every outlet is occupied, this product can provide 7 minutes at a full load. It also has two more outlets that are battery and surge protected, while the value option only has six.
These qualities make this option worth considering if you frequently deal with power anomalies or want to go the extra mile for your gear. Both are salient reasons to invest in this piece of equipment for your home office.
If your home office has the misfortune of spotty Wi-Fi, a range extender can be a complete game changer. Of course, there are plenty of extenders out there, but we have two options that will do the trick.
Best Value: TP-Link OneMesh RE215 AC750
Our best value option is TP-Link’s RE215. Designed to work with OneMesh-compatible networks, this range extender delivers Wi-Fi speeds of up to 733 Mb/s over the 2.4 GHz wireless band. If you don’t have a mesh network, there is no need to worry―the RE215 works with almost any router.
- Easy setup
- Mesh network for seamless room-to-room Wi-Fi without dropping the signal
- High-speed mode can be enabled to maximize your available bandwidth
With the touch of a button, users can easily pair the RE215 with a compatible router. Outfitted with external antennas, the RE215 effectively reaches difficult areas to disperse Wi-Fi more effectively. It is especially great for offices, where Wi-Fi is vital for day-to-day functions.
Best Overall: ASUS RP-AX58
Our best overall range extender option is the RP-AX58, from ASUS. This Wi-Fi 6 range extender reaches a maximum transfer speed of 2976 Mb/s with compatible devices over the 2.4 and 5 GHz bands.
- Incredibly fast performance
- Optional AiMesh when used with compatible routers
- Quick setup and flexible configuration via the ASUS Router app
With the ability to implement ASUS AiMesh, a wireless mesh Wi-Fi network that covers your entire home, this option is especially favorable if you have other ASUS AiMesh compatible routers. Otherwise, setting up closely resembles our budget option―with the WPS button on both devices, or via the RP-AX58’s Gigabit Ethernet port.
Access points are vital network devices that make the Wi-Fi in your home office usable for wireless devices. Some routers have their own access point, so make sure to check yours before purchasing one separately. If you are looking for your first access point, or for a better one, we have two in mind for outfitting your home office.
Best Value: Ubiquiti Networks UAP-AC-IW
Our best-value option pretty much checks all the boxes. The UAP-AC-IW UniFi Access Point from Ubiquiti Networks is easy to set up, reasonably priced, and expandable, depending on your needs.
- Can be easily mounted on a wall
- Simple configuration via the UniFi Controller software
- Tons of metrics available to diagnose problems and manage your security options
The UAP-AC-IW offers great Wi-Fi speeds, with the standard speed of 867Mb/s in the 5 GHz radio band, and up to 300 Mb/s in the 2.4 GHz radio band. It is also scalable, making it a solid option for something bigger than your home office. With simple installation, this access point can be configured quickly to get working on your wireless devices and has ample extra ports for hardwired devices.
Best Overall: Aruba Instant On AP22
We chose Aruba’s Instant On AP22 Dual-Band Access Point for its overall better transfer speeds and simpler setup. This dual-band access point can transfer up to 574 Mb/s over the 2.4 GHz frequency band and 1200 Mb/s on the 5 GHz.
- Great Wi-Fi total throughput
- Utilizes beamforming, among other technologies, to overcome interference
- Enables users to set up Smart Mesh, optionally, where it is difficult to install Ethernet cabling
The AP22 is a great choice for its diverse features and overall functionality. The phone app is easy to navigate and will relay helpful information such as your signal strength and health. It is a breeze to set up and offers uncomplicated management options. Those looking for total control might be better suited to our value option. Overall, the AP22 is powerful, fast, and well suited for a home office environment.
Be advised, the best value and best option categories are defined by our humble opinion and based on B&H's formidable array of options. There are more expensive and higher performing options in every category. What this article strives to achieve is to inform you about upgrades balanced between needs and wants.
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