Your monitor may not be the first piece of electronic equipment you’d think of wanting to accessorize. But, not only are there useful ways that you can make your monitor more ergonomic, flexible, and accurate, there are also inexpensive items that can be attached to it to help organize your workspace, ease eye strain, and make all of your work, even the non-electronic kind, easier.
We’re going to take a look at accessories across several categories, all of which will help you spruce up your workspace and get your tasks done more easily and efficiently.
Mounts and stands
Before you can begin using your monitor as the hub of your workspace, it’s absolutely vital that you get it into an ideal location and position. For the lucky ones, this will be a simple matter of making minor adjustments to the stand it came with, or even just plopping it down onto your desk and getting to work.
However, for most of us, some tweaking will be needed. Higher end displays might come with stands that support all of the tilt, height, and rotation adjustments you need. But, most budget-friendly monitors ship with simpler bases that offer, at most, a modest range of tilt options. To rectify the situation, you should consider picking up a third-party monitor stand or monitor arm.
These accessories can be absolutely integral to finding a position that is ergonomically correct for you. They also play a pivotal role (no pun untended…Ok, it was kind of intended) in our guide to choosing the best monitor layout for your work from home setup. With the correct stand or arm, a display that may have been a literal pain to work at before can become a perfectly-placed home for your computing and productivity needs. This section covers some of the best options for arms, mounts and riser to up your monitor game.
Best for users with one small to medium monitor, and those on a budget
When it comes to maximum flexibility in height, tilt, and rotation, monitor arms are king. The variety that include a lifting mechanism like the HUANUO Upgraded Single Monitor Arm provide the most flexibility possible for how you’d like position your display, while also making it easy to move it out of the way, reconfigure for changing task needs, or just spin it around to access its rear ports.
Given the sturdy materials and precision mechanisms required for monitor mounts, they can often grow quite expensive, particularly if they’re designed to hold larger, heavier monitors. Thankfully, this option is a budget-friendly solution that can provide a stable foundation for anything under 35 inches and less than 26.4lbs, a category which includes all but the largest, heaviest monitors around.
HUANUO even thought to include an extra bonus in the form of a USB pass-through port located on the unit’s clamp-on base. This mount’s tiny footprint can either be clamped to the back of your desk, or held in place by a single bolt passed through a desk grommet or hole in your desktop you drilled yourself. In any case, you’ll save a huge amount of desk space compared to stand-based options.
- Holds the vast majority of common monitor sizes and weights
- Saves desk space with tiny footprint
- Includes built-in cable management channels to keep your setup clean and tangle-free
- Offers 360-degree rotation to support portrait or landscape configurations
- Able to support both sitting and standing desk thank to height range adjustments
- Will not hold very larger monitors (36 inches+) or some heavier ultrawide displays
- Not compatible with desktops under 0.39 inches
- Included USB port’s cable is permanently attached, meaning it will take up unnecessary space if not used
- Requires accurate adjustment during setup to ensure it stays positioned correctly
Best for big-screen and heavy ultrawide displays
Ergotron is pretty widely considered the gold standard in monitor mounting hardware. Their solutions are some of the best, longest-lasting, and most reliable out there. I personally own two monitor arms from the company that are almost old enough to drink, and neither shows any signs of sagging or wear, despite having held many, many monitors over the years.
While more budget-friendly options do exist, and are likely the right choice for the majority of users, a beefy, heavy-duty solution is required for those with the largest displayl bigger ultrawides, or even super ultrawides, like Samsung’s Odyssey G9 lineup. That’s where the Ergotron – HX Single Ultrawide Monitor Arm comes in. It’s specifically designed to handle the weight and torque created by the largest, most curved displays.
Supporting monitors of up to 49 inches and weights as high as 42lbs, this unit is one of the very, very few on the market I’d trust to hold up something like an Odyssey G9 Neo or an interactive pen display like the Cintiq Pro 24″. Of course, this amount of extra material and sturdiness comes at a cost. But, if you’re spending $1,500 to $2,000 on one of the monitor form factors this arm is intended for, you don’t want to cheap out on how you mount it. That couple hundred dollars you saved will be small comfort as you watch it come crashing to the ground after an inferior mount fails.
- Holds up everything up to and including super ultrawides and even some big-screen TVs
- 10-year warranty
- Still only takes up a tiny amount of desk space, even while holding massive displays
- Tensioning system can support a huge range of monitor weights
- Built-in wire management keeps your display’s cable well organized
- Should only be mounted to desktops that are sturdy in their own right
- Does not support full 360-degree display rotation
Best for users that want a more “plug and play” mounting solution with plenty of adjustment
While monitor arms provide the most flexibility in placement, they’re not the ideal solution for everyone. Maybe you have an irregularly shaped desktop that won’t support the mount’s clamping options, Or, maybe you just don’t want to have to fuss with the required initial adjustments, but still want something with plenty of flexibility. For users that full into this category, we recommend considering a good, universal monitor stand.
The MOUNT PRO Single Monitor Stand is our choice in this space. It offers 90 degrees of total tilt, 45 degrees of swivel, and 360 degrees of rotation to support both portrait and landscape setups. Its tall pole mount also provides ample height adjustment ranges for monitors between 13 and 32 inches, weighing up to 17.6lbs.
The included base is on the wider side, but its sturdy confines also include a handy mobile device holder to prop up a smartphone or smaller tablet for easy view during work or play. All in all, this unit provides a cheap, easy to set up, highly flexible way to replace a monitor’s basic included stand with something far more capable and ergonomic.
- Easy setup, just attach your display and place on desk
- Wide range of supported sizes and configurations
- Built-in cable managed keeps tangles and clutter away
- Doesn’t require drilling mounting holes and won’t damage desktops
- Doesn’t offer the same range of movement options as a full monitor arm.
- Height adjustments require tools to complete
- Takes up a fair amount of desk space due to the size of the required base
- Maximum supported weight is on the lower side
Best for users that just need a little more height or desk space
One of the most common problems plaguing those of us that spend our workdays at a desk, especially us taller folk, is the tendency to hunch over our keyboards. While your office chair plays a part in this, your monitor is also a major factor. A monitor placed too low will encourage this behavior, potentially leading to fatigue, back pain, and even long-term damage if not corrected.
For monitor users that are already satisfied with their current monitor stand, but just wish it gave them a bit more height, a monitor riser is the simplest and cheapest solution. Many of us have probably created something similar for ourselves out of old textbooks or something similarly within reach and blocky. The WALI Monitor Stand Riser upgrades that DIY scenario with something that not only offers a range of increased monitor heights, but also provides extra desk space below your display thanks to its sturdy, four-legged construction.
With height options ranging from 3.9 inches to 4.7 inches or 5.5 inches off the desk, and a maximum weight capacity of 44lbs, this riser can support one of the widest ranges of displays of any option on this list. It can even support laptops with its perforated top shelf, which allows for extra cooling of those spicy notebooks.
- Cheap way to create more desk space and nail your correct display height
- Easy to assemble with no tools required
- Supports up to 44lbs, providing ample strength for even big-screen displays
- Ventilated top shelf is ideal for big, heavy desktop-replacement and gaming laptops
- Can also be used for other electronics like desktop speakers, lamps, etc.
- Top shelf size may be too small for some displays its weight limit could otherwise support
- No built-in wire management help
- Height adjustment tiers may not suit everyone if their ideal ergonomics fall between two of them
We’ve all got them, some of us lots of them. Cables, everywhere. They’re a necessary evil that is needed to power and connect our devices together, but they’re constantly in the way, and often result in dangerous tripping hazards and piles of gray and black spaghetti ruining the otherwise carefully tailored aesthetics of our workspaces. Thankfully, your monitor, which typically only adds to this cable clutter, can also be a valuable tool in fighting back against it.
Best for wired mouse users that want a wireless-like experience
Despite the plethora of wireless mouse options available, many of us still rely on, or even prefer, wired options. Maybe it’s because you work somewhere with tons of wireless interference that makes maintain a connection impossible, or you hate replacing/charging mouse batteries, or you just like the size or shape or weight of a wired mouse better than any other option.
While the reasons for choosing a wired mouse can vary greatly between users, one thing is nearly universal: none of use love dealing with keeping that cord out of the way. This is especially true for the gamers that often choose wireless mice for latency benefits and their typically lighter weight. Having a cord end up under your mouse during a particularly aggressive flick shot or in the middle of a heated dungeon raid can spell disaster.
To prevent this, many companies offer mouse bungies. The small units had typically been something that lived on the desk itself, with a spring-loaded arm at their tips to help keep the cable from dragging or getting in the way. While these are a great option, they take up a decent amount of desk space for a simple need. Pulsar, a gaming mouse company, has solved this with an unbelievable simple solution that attaches directly to your monitor. It will hold you mouse cable up and out of the way, preventing unwanted drag on your pointing device, and unwanted wear on mouse wire’s outer casing. It also features an extremely easy installation process. Even better, it does all this for the unbelievably low price of $5, or $12 if you want a three pack to equip all of your workstations.
- Takes up zero desk space
- Easy installation and cable switching process means swapping mice is painless
- Incredibly cheap
- Also useful for lifting keyboard or other peripheral cables off your desk
- Flexible tip’s elasticity warns you when you’re nearing your mouse’s maximum cable extension
- Will likely need to be replaced if you get a new monitor
- Not ideal for displays with unusually thin or uneven bottom bezels
- Not as flexible in its placement as a desktop mouse bungie
- Some extremely thin or extremely thick cables may be hard to fit or may slip through
Best for users with lots of cables to manage
If the mouse bungie above seems like a great idea, but you want to apply a similar concept to your webcam, microphone, keyboard, drawing tablet, or whatever other devices combine to generate a rat’s nest of cabling to that’s constantly plaguing your desk, this inexpensive organizational kit is ideal for you.
This pack of rubbery, adhesive-backed little cable catchers can easily hold between one and five cables each, allowing you to route them to unobtrusive places around the back of your display. While not specifically designed for monitors, the often-hidden back panels of our displays make these ideal for managing cables in a place where no one’s likely to see them.
Even better, the cord holders can let you clip in something like a laptop power cable, USB-C connector, or other cable that you frequently need to connect and disconnect. Just imagine popping one onto the back of your display and always knowing exactly where the USB-C docking cable for your laptop is at all times, without ever needing to reach behind the desk because it slipped off your desktop once again. I’d say a few saved treks into the dark depths that exist between your desk and wall is well worth the minimal cost of these handy little gadgets.
- Inexpensive and plentiful
- Can handle nearly any type of electronic or data cable
- Design prevents cables from slipping off desks or into hard-to-reach spaces
- Ideal for routing display and USB cables into monitors
- Included adhesive pads won’t damaged electronics for furniture
- May struggle with some extremely thick cables, like heavy-duty extension cords or DVI cables
- Larger clips will likely be too wide to mount on monitor sides
- Included adhesive requires 24 to reach full bond strength
Eye care and accuracy
Avoiding eye strain from your monitor is important. For those of us that wear glasses, coatings are available that can help greatly, while users with perfect vision can acquire specs of their own for that singular purpose. However, there are some things that can be added to your display that will help you not only avoid unnecessary strain, but also offer a more accurate and consistent visual experience, even across multiple monitors.
Best for users with small desks that still need bias or task lighting
One of the most important tools in reducing the eyestrain brought on by staring at our monitors all day long is the presence of good ambient or bias lighting. This increase in ambient brightness allows your eyes to relax more while viewing a bright monitor, and can also help the image on the screen appear more contrasted and vibrant by helping your pupil dilation adjust to a point where the monitor’s black portions actually look black, instead of gray.
Of course, you can accomplish this by choosing a workspace with ample windows, or by positioning lamps or overhead lightning nearby. Unfortunately, for many of use, none of these options are practical due to the placement of our, often cramped, workspaces. Even something as small as a desk lamp may be a no-go for the most constricted of us.
Thankfully, BenQ has your back with a new kind of light that’s designed specifically to live on top of your monitor. The Screenbar clips on much like a webcam would, and provides down-facing light that’s specifically tailored not to create unwanted reflections or glare on your display. Its adjustable brightness and color temperatures also mean you can get just the right amount of light and the correct shade for what your working on. Even better, the easy, touch-sensitive controls make switching between settings a breeze. It’s not the cheapest solution of its kind, but the first-of-its-kind form factor remains one of the best options for lighting small desk spaces.
- Provides ample desk lighting with zero screen glare
- Great for people that like to work late into the night without backlit keyboards
- Highly directed light won’t disturb sleeping loved ones when used in bedroom offices
- Universal clamping mechanism fits a huge range of monitor sizes and configurations
- Built-in light sensor allows for auto-dimming during daytime hours
- Relatively pricey for a fairly simple device
- May interfere with common webcam mounting spots
- Requires user-provided USB power source
- Maximum brightness may not cut it for some of the most delicate tasks
Best for those with irregularly shaped monitors, or those wishing for a cheaper option
BenQ’s excellent Screenbar has spawned many, many imitators. While most stick to the same over-the-monitor mounting design, the KableRika LED Desk Lamp provides an alternative that can provide the same display-improving, eye-strain-reducing bias lighting without needing to directly attach to your display.
Instead, the unit clamps onto your desk itself, with its long gooseneck arm allowing it to extend upward over two feet to arch over your display and provide downward-firing lighting. While its mounting hardware may be completely different, this unit closely replicates the BenQ Screenbar’s brightness and color temperature options, up to and including a built-in light sensor for automated dimming control.
It even outdoes the BenQ in a few areas, including its more varied range of possible positions, and its 31.5 inch width, which can light a broader portion of the desktop than BenQ’s original design. All of this comes in a package that will run you just a little over half of what the Screenbar would cost you. This light’s so good it may even be worth considering for your craft table, workbench, or other tinkering spaces, all of which are options thanks to its ample flexibility.
- Desk mounting eliminates monitor compatibility issues
- Long gooseneck makes it easier to arch over even larger displays
- Controls match those found on much more expensive models
- Increased width will pair well with big-screen and ultrawide displays
- Always remembers your last settings when powering off
- Screen glare is more possible that the BenQ Screenbar without careful positioning
- Mounting clamps requires clearance space between desk and wall
- Maximum brightness may not be up to extremely delicate tasks.
- Size may prove too large for most smaller desks
Best for creative professionals and those trying to match colors across multi-monitor setups
Colorimeters like the datacolor SpyderX Pro have been around for a long time. For most of that period, they’ve primarily been limited to realm of creative professionals who use them to ensure that their displays are calibrated correctly to give them the most accurate representation possible of the images and videos they’re working on. While they remain absolutely vital for this purpose, a new type of user for them has emerged: monitor enthusiasts trying to get a consistent display experience across multiple monitors.
If you’re trying to setup one of the many multi-monitor configurations we suggest in the guide linked near the top of this report, you may realize that matching the exact color profiles of multiple monitors can be challenging. This is especially true if those monitors use different display panel technology and are made by different manufacturers. Preset color gamut settings built into some display can help, but even these often don’t produce perfect matching across disparate units.
This is where a colorimeter comes in. The tiny device lets you take highly accurate readings from each of your displays, allowing you to tweak color, brightness, tone, and a bevy of other settings to get them all as close as possible to your ideal. To be clear, this level of attention to detail may be overkill. But, for the most particular users, or those that get annoyed when that one website always looks just a bit more yellow one one display than the other, a colorimeter is an excellent, if somewhat pricey, way to match things up as closely as possible.
- Vital for creative professionals wanting an accurate representation of their final print or digital outputs
- Useful across literally any type of display
- Provides 12 pre-defined calibration targets for easy configuration across one or more displays
- Supports Windows and MacOS
- Able to adjust for ambient lighting conditions to produce more accurate results
- Overkill for some users, given the cost
- Calibration beyond the included 12 profiles require the more expensive SpyderX Elite model’s included software
- Some scattered users reported the hardware produced the best results with third-party software instead
No amount of display technology, calibration, or ambient lighting is going to be able to overcome a dusty, streaky display. Although many of us may be afraid to damage our expensive monitors by using harsh cleaners or scratchy cloths, safe, inexpensive options are available. We’ve gathered two of our favorites below.
Best for those wanting a comprehensive cleaning solution for their monitors and other displays
Whether its you doing a spit-take over the latest TikTok comedy trend, your dog deciding to shake off after their bath right in front of your desk, or simple ambient dust collection, your monitor is going to get dirty. A dry cloth might be enough for most situations, but you’re going to want to occasionally get a deeper clean with a wet solution.
The often delicate and highly varied coating and materials used in displays mean that using the wrong cleaner can quickly ruin an extremely expensive investment. To avoid this disaster, we recommend Eveo’s screen cleaner spray. The included fluid and cleaning cloth are safe for any type of monitor, and can also be used on your smartphone, tablet, TV, and even your eyeglasses.
With more than 14,000 reviews, a 4 1/2 star rating, and the top sot in the Audio and Video Lens Cleaner category on Amazon, this solution has quite the following. Despite all that, this generously-sized and reasonably-priced 16oz bottle provides 1,000 sprays to keep your displays bright and shiny for months, if not years, to come, all for less than $15.
Best for quick, intermittent cleanings and dust removal
While the Eveo kit above is excellent for deep, comprehensive cleaning of your monitor, it may not be something you need to bust out on a daily, or even weekly basis. Instead, for quick simple jobs, consider something like the Awesome Screen Cleaning Balls.
These tiny tools are soft little spheres with microfiber on one side and an even more delicate “ultrafine” material on the other. They can grab dust, wipe away fingerprints, and clean off smudges while costing you less than $5 a piece.
Best of all, the soft, stuffed form factor make it easy to reach into the tightest corner of your display, or even between slim air vents to get every particle of dust out. This offer for a three-pack means you can keep one at your desk, one in your laptop bag, and even one in your car for quick smartphone wipe downs.
How did we choose these products?
We selected each of these entries based on the universal monitor use experiences for all types of users, from gamers, to creative professionals, to home-office workers, and even just casual browsers. These accessories fulfill a need that nearly all of us will run into, especially as more and more of us move toward permanent work-from-home realities.
Each of the exact models and brands selected is among the most well-reviewed and most cost-effective options in its given space, with some of the more expensive entries having been included on the merit of their extreme uniqueness or nearly life-changing usefulness.
Which product is right for you?
As mentioned above, we feel that any of these products can be extremely handy for just about anyone. That said, certain users will likely find some categories more vital to their comfort and productivity than others.
For example, monitor stands and mounts are most vital to the work-from-home warrior that spends eight+ hours per day perched in front of the displays we’re trying to accessorize. Those same folk will also likely appreciate a solid cleaning solution thanks to the constant presence of their pets or children in their home office spaces.
Meanwhile, wire management accessories are for anyone that likes to keep a clean, well-organized workspace, regardless of whether that’s for their own Zen, or to present a better image for those that see where you operate on a daily basis.
If you’re wondering if any of these items are a good idea for you, simply think about when they may or may not be useful during your next session parked in front of a PC monitor. The answer should become clear in just a few hours, if not sooner.
How do I know which monitor arm/stand to choose?
There’s three important factors to consider when choosing a mounting solution: size, weight, and VESA pattern.
- Size: This is the diagonal size of your display. It’s the fact your most likely to know off the top of your head, and a useful tool in finding mounting solutions that are compatible with your display. However, we strongly recommend verifying that any arm or stand you choose is compatible with both the size and weight of your monitor for maximum safety.
- Weight: This may be a bit harder to find out, but is almost always listed somewhere in the manual that came with your display. Manuals can usually also be accessed at the support website for your monitor’s manufacturer. Be sure you’re looking at the weight of the monitor without it’s included stand. The original stand will need to be detached before adding an after-market mounting solution, so it’s weight should not be included in determining compatible stand and mount weight limits.
- VESA pattern: The VESA (Video Electronics Standards Association) pattern is essentially the distance between the four mounting screws located on the back of your display. This is how you will attach your monitor to its new arm our mount. The most common sizes are 75×75 for smaller and lighter displays, and 100×100 for larger, heavier displays. Both represent the number of millimeters between each of the the four threaded holes, which are arranged in a square pattern. Some extremely large displays may use go as high as 200×200, but anything larger than 100×100 is almost always reserved for the largest big-screen TVs, not PC monitors.
How do I plan out my cable management?
This is an important step in determining how many cable clips and holders you may need.
First, take a long, hard look at your desk and see if there are any devices you can eliminate. Haven’t used that scanner in 3 years? Maybe it doesn’t need to take up desk space anymore. Have a webcam cable laying across your desk? mounting it to your monitor or even on a flexible arm will help.
Once you’re sure everything on your desk really needs to be there, and it’s in its optimal location, then begin counting cables. Drawing a quick, simple diagram can help here by revealing obvious points in your setup where lots of wires will need to be bundled or joined together. This could be an ideal spot for one or more of the multi-cable clips like we’ve linked above.
After you’ve done this, don’t be afraid to order a few extra clips or cable management widgets. All of our setups change over time, and it’s great to have a few extra helpers on hand to immediately cable manage that new microphone or LED lamp, especially given how cheaply such clips can be had.
What if I just use my laptop’s built-in display?
Many of us use laptops as our sole PC. Their portability and flexibility mean they’re a favorite of everyone from business travelers to the casual couch surfer. But, if you ever find yourself consistently using a laptop in a single location, particularly a desk or work table, just about all of our categories here will be useful for you as well.
Stand and mounts can be purchased for laptops too. In fact, Amazon makes its own laptop mounting tray (linked below in our alternative products) that can be added added to any monitor arm with adequate weight limits. Simple monitor risers can be just as useful as laptop stands as well, helping us avoid the dreaded hunch mentioned early on in this guide.
Similarly, creative professionals that work from a laptop will still want accurate colors, and everyone still wants a clean screen. While not every single device here may be useful for a laptop-only setup, many are. So it’s still well worth thinking of your notebook PC’s display as the monitor it is. You may find you can accessorize it with something incredibly useful, just like your desktop-using counterparts can.
Are there alternative products worth considering?
Although we feel this list gives a comprehensive cross-section of the most common monitor accessory needs, there are some more niche situations that require an alternate solution. For these situations, we’ve gathered a few extra options below that will help even more users make their lives easier.