Considering how many people spend the lion’s share of their daily life inside an office, it’s surprising how few of us have taken steps to make our office setups more inspiring.
Here we explore seven workspaces so well kitted-out and stylised that they could feature in an episode of “Pimp My Office”. With the right furniture and accessories, you too can turn your boring, drab office into a “blinging” workspace, fit for a media mogul, creative mastermind or “corporate gangster”.
Danny Choo’s Insanely Geeky Mac Setup
If you died and went to Apple heaven, it would look very much like this, only without the female anime figurines cluttering the place. This office setup is equipped with all the latest Apple paraphernalia, including two iMacs, two MacBook Pros, a Power Mac G5, a Mac mini and an iPod touch, used as a desk clock.
With the excellent Teleport, the user of this setup can control all of the machines on his or her desk with just one keyboard and mouse. When the cursor is moved off the right-hand side of one screen, it appears on the left of an adjacent screen, allowing all the Macs to be used simultaneously and files to be dragged and dropped between computers.
Pro Photographer’s Dream Setup
This setup is small, but perfectly formed. Everything from the industrial strength (steel-reinforced) desk, to the sumptuous blue colour scheme, screams style and sophistication. The Apple Mac Pro (Dual Quad-Core Intel Xeon) and the MacBook Pro (2.8GHz Intel Core 2 Duo) are connected by a Firewire 800 shared network and fit seamlessly with the 24” Dell Ultrasharp Widescreen monitor.
The Wacom Tablet (a must for all Adobe Illustrator users) and APC Battery Back Ups, which can run office hardware for 30 minutes in the event of a power failure, provide the finishing touches to this perfectly balanced workspace. The only thing we’re unsure about is the user’s unhealthy obsession with Jackie Martinez: who is she, anyway?
Stefan Didak’s Infamous Geekfest
Eminent Dutch software designer, Stefan Didak, wins the prize for the most excessive use of screens: he uses twelve monitors in a setup which would seemingly suit an octopus better than a human being. Six 24” monitors (two angled Elizo Flexscan and four HP LP2475w monitors mounted on Ergotron LX arms) form the main focal point of the setup, with three 17” Hyundai monitors, a 19” HP monitor and a couple of laptops on the periphery. Don’t ask Stefan about his electricity bill!
The office has a Behringer audio system, with a Behringer Eurotrack Pro RX1602 16-channel mixer and a Behringer Miniamp Amp800, complete with headphone amplifier, which is just as well considering the huge amount of noise the fans on all this equipment must make. The brick-textured foam wallpaper is designed to absorb some of this white noise, and looks great under the ambient LED lighting.
Minimalist Desk Perfection
This great setup has a minimalist Scandinavian design ethic that perfectly suits the Apple hardware it contains. The office is wonderfully bright; thanks to a large window in the ceiling which casts natural light onto brilliant white walls. Three monitors (one 30” Apple Cinema Display flanked by two 20” Apple Cinema Displays), which sit atop a spacious white Ikea Effektiv series desk, receive images from a Mac Pro (3GHz) that sits snugly underneath.
The setup features a Norwegian-designed Stokke Duo chair, in black leather and wood. This unique chair seeks to overcome the muscular problems associated with a sedentary lifestyle, by providing several comfortable ways to park your backside. The chair can be used in three positions: upright, leaning forward and leanimg back.
Triple Display Corner Desk Utopia
This rather masculine setup (note black colour scheme and half finished bottle of lager) is both functional and stylistically coherent. Everything, except for the rogue white keyboard to the left of the picture, fits seamlessly together.
Rather than position the monitors side-by-side, the standard method employed in the vast majority of examples here, the user of this setup has kept them apart, so as to produce two (or three if you count the laptop) distinct workspaces, each with a keyboard, mouse and 20” Dell monitor (the newer of which is an S2009W Full HD Widescreen LCD).
Desk-bound Gadget Overload
PanHandle Joe, the user of this office, has managed to cram an impressive amount of kit onto limited shelving, making the most of his workspace. The key feature of this setup is a string of 6 monitors, spanning a whopping 7ft. There’s even a laptop on the side, just in case he runs out of screen space! The three Dual-Core 3.0GHz computers are controlled using Stardock Multiplicity, an effective tool that can handle up to 7 machines at once.
An office with 7ft of monitors is impressive enough, but the legendary PanHandle Joe was not content to stop there. His setup is complete with a fully functional and well-stocked bar, with 18 different spirits, Jack Daniels in every size, a fridge full of beer, a cigar safe, a Busch Bavarian clock and even a wine whistle (whatever that is!)
The GTD Guy’s Home Office Desk
This office, more high fashion than high-tech, shows that it takes more than metres of monitors to make a great setup. Simplicity is key to this desk setup, and the Mac mini and wireless Apple keyboard help add to the uncluttered nature of this space, as do the Audioengine A5 Bookshelf Speakers, which negate the need for an unsightly subwoofer.
IKEA furniture is a cheap and effective way of adding a hint of style to your office, and the dark green cabinet here looks great against the white walls and wooden floor. Everything in this setup has its place, apart from perhaps the bike. Whether or not this is the bike’s usual home (I suspect it was brought in for stylistic effect), a beautiful single-speed racer such as this adds a certain European “je ne sais quoi” to any room.