Choosing between a dual motor or single motor standing desk can be sort of tricky, especially if you're not conversant with their points of differentiation. The most obvious difference between the two standing desks would be the motor power output. It is assumed that two motors perform better than one, however, this is often not an accurate indicator of superiority.
On single motor standing desk frames, the motor or motor cover is always visible within the design. Each leg also encompasses a hex rod-driven system that allows the desk to move simultaneously. Both hex rods on a single motor desk must be aligned for the desk to have balance. On the other hand, dual-motor models are often smaller and sleeker, with the motor concealed within the design. The motor is often placed inside a small box at the top of the columns, one motor to each leg.
There are many factors to consider when it comes to choosing between a single motor and a dual motor standing desk frame. These factors include the load capacity, adjustment speed, aesthetics, cost, ease of assembly, and maintenance. This guide explores key considerations when choosing a standing desk frame, while also comparing FlexiSpot's EC1/EN1 (single motor frames) and FlexiSpot's EC3/EC4 (dual motor frames)
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Standing Desk Frame
Load Capacity and Adjustment Speed
Load capacity and adjustment speed are often interrelated. Depending on the brand and model, dual motor standing desk frames usually have higher load capacity and faster adjustment speeds. Dual motor standing desk frames also come with greater lifting capacity than single motor models and provide better stability for larger loads. Your choice of single motor or dual motor standing desk frame should therefore be guided by your desktop weight requirements, as well as your preferred adjustment speed.
Compared to a single motor standing desk frame, the dual-motor models are more aesthetically pleasing with a sleeker appearance. Unlike single motor desk designs, dual-standing desks' motors are concealed within rectangular boxes located above each leg column. Instead of using one large and super powerful motor, dual motor frames use two smaller and less powerful motors that can fit each leg's width, translating to a more aesthetically pleasing and minimalist design.
Assembly and Maintenance
When it comes to assembly and maintenance, dual-motor desks are far simpler to assemble and leave less room for error, considering that each leg has its built-in motor. Single motor desk frames require a high level of precision to assemble since they require a hex rod's alignment from the shared motor to each leg. If not assembled properly, the desk surface may be uneven. Further on, the height adjustability function may fail as a result. In addition, depending on the model, maintaining dual-motor desks is less expensive compared to single motor models.
As you would expect, a single motor standing desk frame is more affordable than a dual-motor frame. In essence, while dual-motor standing desk frames have several advantages (appearance and performance-wise), single motor frames are ideal if you're focused on cost and consistency.
FlexiSpot Single Motor Frames (EC1/EN1) vs. FlexiSpot Dual Motor Frames (EC3/EC4)
Desktop Size and Shape
The FlexiSpot EC3 and EC4 feature rectangular desktops, which can expand from 43.3" – 66.9". The EC1 and EN1 also offer rectangular desktops but with less working horizontal adjustment space, i.e., 33.5" to 50.8". Therefore, the EC3 and EC4 are ideal if you're looking for an adjustable table to hold an enormous desktop of between 48" and 55" and still leave some space for an additional monitor, mouse, keyboard, or whatever periphery device you have.
FlexiSpot's single motor standing desk frames EC1 and EN1 offer a fully adjustable standing experience from 28" - 47.6" (without desktop). With the height adjustment starting from 27.9", these desks are not suitable for seating. Besides, the wide range of height adjustments makes the desk appropriate for medium height users with the addition of an under desk keyboard tray. The adjustable height range for the double motor standing desk frames EC3 and EC4 are 28.1" - 47.5"(with 1" desktop) and 23.8" - 49.4"(with 1" desktop), respectively. The EC4 model also comes with an option of adjusting higher than 2 stage frames, and therefore, is more in tune with a larger range of users. The EC4 height adjustability starts at 23.8"; thus, it's suitable for use as a seating desk. Therefore, if you're considering a standing desk with a higher lifting range, the FlexiSpot's dual-motor standing desk frame, EC4, is the most suitable option.
Lifting Capacity, Speed, and Noise
If you have bulky equipment for your workstation, you have to consider your desk's weight capacity. As mentioned earlier, dual motor standing desk frames have a higher lifting capacity compared to the single motor models. The EC1 and EN1 single motor frames have a lifting capacity of 154 lbs. compared to EC3's and EC4's lifting capacity of 220lbs. and 275lbs. respectively. Therefore, the dual-motor frames are best suited for users with more items and higher weight loads on their desks, for instance, some musical equipment, an additional monitor, a gaming console, a speaker, a printer, and more. When it comes to lifting speed, the EC1 and EN1 single-motor frames are a little bit quicker compared to the EC3 and EC4 dual-motor frames. EC1 and EN1 both have a lift speed of 1"/sec compared to EC3's 1.26"/sec and EC4's 1.5"/sec. Despite the small difference in lifting speed, both the models go up and down effortlessly with just a press of a button. As for the noise, the EC1, EN1, EC3, and EC4 models all have adjustment sounds less than 50 decibels. The whisper-like movement allows you to adjust the desks' height without making annoying sounds.
Two-Stage and Three-Stage Design
The EC1 and EN1 single-motor model and the EC3 dual-motor desk frame all have an inverted 2-stage, while the EC4 features an inverted 3-stage. This means that the EC4's three-stage lifting column has an extra actuator stage built into the column, giving it a larger vertical adjustment range than a two-stage model. The EC4 is ideal if you're looking for a standing desk with the widest height adjustment possible, thanks to its three-stage design.
Hand Control and Presets
The FlexiSpot EN1, EC3, and EC4 come with an intuitive control panel that stores three height preference presets. This feature comes in handy in enabling you to seamlessly adjust your table's setting based on your preference. The presets allow you to easily save your preferred seated, standing, and under-desk cycling heights. The three models also come with a 0-99 mins customized sit-stand reminder timer. The built-in reminder system helps you remember to shift working positions now and then, enabling you to save yourself from the possible back and neck pains arising from prolonged sitting.
The EC1, EN1, EC3, and EC4 are all stable thanks to the solid construction. The EC1 and EN1 single-motor models are both constructed with industrial-grade steel, thus, are quite stable. The desk frames are free of any wobbling, even at the highest adjustment point. The EC3 and EC4 are constructed with powder-coated steel tubing, thus can stand the test of time. The models are resistant to stains and scratches All 4 models assure you of high-quality stability, even at the highest setting. However, the dual-motor frames are more stable since the dual-motor system powers each leg with its own motor, greatly increasing overall weight capacity while maximizing stability, speed, smoothness, silence, and strength. The rectangular column design also makes the desk frames stable enough to withstand larger load capacities.
Pricing is another key deciding factor. As mentioned earlier, dual-motor frames are more pricey than single-motor frames and are of similarly higher quality, with extra functionality. The EC3 and EC4 dual-motor frames currently retail at $399.99 and $499, respectively. The single-motor models are sold for $359.99(EN1 model) and $248.93(EC1 model). The EC4 is higher-priced since it comes with additional features, notably increased weight capacity, increased height adjustability range, and inverted 3-stage feature.
All the aforementioned FlexiSpot desk frames, i.e., EC1, EN1, EC3, and EC4, come with a five-year warranty for the frame, motor, other mechanisms, and a 2-year warranty for the controller, switch, and electronics. For all the models, the actuator is certified and supplied by Loctek Linear Motion.
Which To Pick: Single Or Dual Motor?
After reading through the comparison, the decision to pick a single or dual motor standing desk frame solely lies with you. In choosing your ideal desk frame, you may want to consider factors such as user heights, your suitable transition speed, desk layout and load capacity. However, when it comes to quality over price, dual-motor frames carry the day and are most suited for high load capacity, better height adjustment, and more workspace. If you're considering FlexiSpot's standing desk frame, the EC3 and EC4 should be your top choice. While they are quite pricey, they are of high quality and hold many performance-enhancing features, unseen in any of the other dual-motor standing desks on the market.