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As working from home has gone mainstream, many of our favorite remote-work staples have become harder to buy online. (Good luck finding a decent webcam or USB mic, for example.) Still, there are plenty of super solid peripherals, accessories and services available — and they can make a big difference.
The must-haves are obvious: A full-size keyboard, a wireless mouse and an external monitor. But there’s a handful of other gear — from blue-light-blocking glasses to standing desks — that can make your workday just as good, if not better, than if you were at the office. Our recommendations are below.
Read more: 13 stay-at-home essentials for under $20
Boost the production values of online meetings
Logitech HD Pro Webcam C922x
After being sold out for weeks, Logitech’s C922x is now intermittently back in stock at Newegg. (If it’s sold out — or you’re turned off by the price gouging — we recommend using a tripod and your phone’s HD camera for video chatting. Here’s how to do it.) And if you’re looking for other gear to help enhance your meetings online, we’ve got a roundup of gear for video chats.
$116 at Newegg
Step up your display
32-inch BenQ EW3270U 4K monitor
BenQ is currently offering $50 off this 32-inch 4K LED display. That’s a good price for a large, ultra high-def HDR display.
$450 at BenQ
Turn your laptop into a desktop
Apple Magic keyboard (and Magic Mouse 2)
I’m a dedicated Apple MacBook Air user, and when I’m working from home, I’m typing on Apple’s roomy Magic Keyboard — the one with the numeric extension. It has the old-school Mac keyboard design and space, with the pleasing scissor key mechanism, and it’s wireless, connecting via Bluetooth. Best of all, the battery, which is rechargeable via USB, lasts for many months on a charge. (I also love Apple’s Magic Mouse 2 for the same reasons.)
$119 at Amazon
You can use Apple’s peripherals with Windows machines, but if you’re looking for an alternative Bluetooth keyboard that will work with anything from Windows PCs to Macs to iPads to phones, the Logitech K380 (about $30) is a great choice. Pair it with up to three devices, and toggle between each of them with the click of a button.
Take that laptop off your lap
AmazonBasics laptop desk stand
It’s all about the ergonomics when it comes to office furniture and accessories, and a good laptop stand will bring your display up to eye level and help you sit up straighter.
$20 at Amazon
When you need to shut out the world
Plantronics BackBeat Pro 2
If your kids invade your office and you really need to tune out distractions, noise-canceling headphones are a good way to maintain focus. Plantronics isn’t as cool a brand as Beats or Bose, but the BackBeat Pro 2 provide excellent wireless noise canceling and they cost considerably less than comparable models from those other companies. They’re also really comfortable to wear, sound great on phone calls and are smart enough to pause whatever you’re listening to when you take them off. But if you need more options — including AirPods-style true wireless models — check out our list of best noise-canceling headphones. Read our Plantronics BackBeat Pro 2 review.
$133 at Amazon
Protect your eyes
Gunnar Optiks Intercept
My wife swears by these. After clocking five to eight hours of Zoom meetings a day over the past several weeks, she had been suffering from fatigue, headaches and eye pain every night. Since she started wearing Gunnar Optiks’ blue-light-blocking glasses — the Cruz model, specifically — she’s been feeling none of that. The company offers a variety of models designed for computer work, gaming and reading — with a prescription or not — that start at $40.
See at Gunnar Optiks
Step up your coffee game
Ninja Hot and Cold Brewed System
When you work from home, making coffee becomes a sacramental practice. Think of this kitchen appliance as the Swiss army knife of the drip coffee maker world. The Ninja programmable brewer (with frother, thermal carafe and reusable filter) offers an uncanny degree of flexibility, making it the best coffee maker for those who don’t always want the same cup. It can create everything from solid drip, to perfect cold brew, to iced coffee, to latte-style drinks with its milk frother, and it will adjust the temperature according to your choice. Its thermal carafe will keep tea or coffee hot up to two hours. This programmable coffee maker even lets you brew iced coffee and hot coffee in multiple sizes, from small cups, mugs and travel mugs, all the way up to half and full carafes. Read our Ninja Hot and Cold Brewed System review.
$200 at Amazon
$230 at Best Buy
$265 at Walmart
Spend your commute time in the kitchen
When you’re not commuting, there may be some more time for dinner prep. Dinnerly rolls out some pretty exciting-sounding and delicious meals such as summery chicken panzanella and risotto with asparagus and cannellini beans. But with no more than six ingredients per recipe, the damage done to your time and kitchen is minimized. Along with not overwhelming you with myriad ingredients and multiple steps, the price tag for Dinnerly puts it squarely in the budget-friendly category, clocking in with a cost per serving of around $5. The subscription options include a Two-Person Box for $30, or a Family Box for $60, each with three recipes for the week. Looking for more options? Check out our list of best mealkit services.
See at Dinnerly
Stay home and watch movies
Assuming you already have Netflix, this is a good time to explore other online streaming options. One of the biggest services to launch in some time, Disney has gathered a mix of movies, TV shows and exclusive content, including the Star Wars show The Mandalorian, for $6.99 a month.
$7 at Disney Plus
More stuff to make WFH go smoothly
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