Best studio desks 2023: budget-spanning options for organising your recording studio space

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1. Product guide
2. Buying advice
3. How we choose products

When you begin your music production journey, your ‘studio’ might consist of little more than a laptop and a pair of headphones, and buying one of the best studio desks might seem like a pretty low priority. However, as your skills improve and your demand for gear increases, your setup will inevitably outgrow your kitchen table, and then it’s time to put some thought into how best to situate it.

True, you could just buy an off-the-peg work desk from your local flatpack furniture store, but comfort is often conducive to creativity, and that’s where a bit of furniture that’s specifically designed for music producers can really help you out.

This round-up of the best studio desks demonstrates how many options there are - for all budgets, and for every usage type - to help you get your studio organised. To help you navigate the article we've listed our choices in price order so you can browse more easily. For those of you who are new to the world of studio desks, head down to our buying advice section before purchasing to ensure you're fully armed with the knowledge. Otherwise, keep scrolling for our top picks...

Chris Corfield author image
Chris Corfield

Chris Corfield is a journalist with over 12 years of experience writing for some of the music world's biggest brands including Orange Amplification, MusicRadar, Guitar World Total Guitar, and Dawsons Music. Chris loves getting nerdy about everything from guitar and bass gear to synths, microphones, DJ gear, and music production hardware.

Best studio desks: Product guide

Getting the perfect studio desk for your particular space is an important step in becoming an efficient music producer. Having all your gear laid out in an ergonomic and intuitive way takes away the pressure to perform when a deadline is tight, and ensuring you're comfortable in your space - and that your gear is positioned with optimal performance in mind - is just as critical as having that fancy outboard compressor.

Thankfully there are lots of different options for studio desks, whether you're just starting out in the box or running a full-time recording studio.

Best studio desks: Buying advice

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Do I need a studio desk?

Right now, you may have a battered old computer workstation overflowing with gear, or you may be rocking something far more palatial. Either way, a studio desk is a crucial part of almost any recording equation, and somewhere you can neatly lay out all your equipment. 

We often underestimate how much impact the right studio desk can have: not only do they add valuable extra real estate for your stuff,  but they can also reignite your creative fire by putting all of your kit within arms reach and inspiring you to work in new ways. If your gear is always set up and ready to go, then you can create the moment an idea hits you.

How do I choose the best studio desk for me?

As a music producer, having a dedicated studio desk can make all the difference in your workflow and creativity. With a desk designed specifically for music production, you can streamline your setup, enhance your comfort and improve your overall productivity.

If space is an issue, studio desks are designed to be compact and efficient, allowing you to fit more gear into a smaller footprint. This means you can have all your gear, from keyboards to rackmounts, within arms’ reach without having to waste valuable studio space on a sprawling setup.

This reduction in space doesn’t come at the expense of organisation, either. If anything, with a dedicated studio desk you can neatly organise all your equipment, reducing clutter and ensuring that everything is easily accessible. This could even improve your workflow, by enabling you to focus on your creative process rather than wasting time searching for - or setting up - the right gear.

We also the like the customisation options you unlock by opting for a proper studio desk. Many come with space, fixtures and fittings for installing 19” rackmounted gear directly into the desk, so that fancy 24-input audio interface you’ve had your eye on will be easily accessible, along with your other effects gear.

Don’t underestimate the importance of comfort, either. Many studio desks are designed with ergonomics in mind, so you can work comfortably for extended periods of time. Features such as adjustable height, wrist supports and cable management can both help alleviate fatigue and add to the ‘tidy desk/tidy mind’ philosophy you get from having a dedicated, tidy space.

How to get the best value from your studio desk

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Price-wise, at the entry-level end of the best studio desks market you’ll find compact models with minimal extra functionality. It’s not unreasonable to expect certain space-saving features here either. For example, a sliding drawer to keep synthesizers tucked away, or a dual layer design to keep your monitor screen elevated and free up space for MIDI pad controllers or the like. These desks won’t be made from the best materials or represent the most stylish options, but they’ll do the job as intended.

Higher up the price ladder, you’ll discover studio desks with superior construction quality, ergonomic design and space for bespoke equipment that can be installed directly into the unit.

Room to grow

When a desk is in its ‘right’ place, it won’t usually be moved, so it’s important to make sure your chosen studio desk is the right size for the space you’re going to be working in and contains everything you need. Keep in mind potential future expansion, too – your playing may require new equipment down the line, which may, in turn, require more space. Therefore it’s advisable to buy the biggest studio desk you can afford or find space for – it's not something you want to be replacing when you buy that new synth or upgrade to a double-screen setup, for example.

How we choose the best studio desks

Here at MusicRadar, we are experts in our field, with many years of playing, creating and product testing between us. We live and breathe everything music gear related, and we draw on this knowledge and experience of using products in live, recording and rehearsal scenarios when selecting the products for our guides. 

When choosing what we believe to be the best studio desks available right now, we combine our hands-on experience, user reviews and testimonies and engage in lengthy discussions with our editorial colleagues to reach a consensus about the top products in any given category.

First and foremost, we are musicians, and we want other players to find the right product for them. So we take into careful consideration everything from budget to feature set, ease of use and durability to come up with a list of what we can safely say are the best studio desks on the market right now.

Find out more about how we test music gear and services at MusicRadar.

Chris Corfield

Chris Corfield is a journalist with over 12 years of experience writing for some of the music world's biggest brands including Orange Amplification, MusicRadar, Guitar World, Total Guitar and Dawsons Music. Chris loves getting nerdy about everything from guitar and bass gear, to synths, microphones, DJ gear and music production hardware.