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The best monitor arms in 2020

Best monitor arms: man adjusting monitor using Vari Dual monitor arm
The best monitor arms can save your back and eyesight (Image credit: Vari)

The best monitor arms are in a sense priceless. Why? Because they help protect your health and well-being, and who can put a price on that?

While everyone is different, in general your eyes should be level with the top of the screen, and you should be sat far enough away that your fingertips can just touch it. You may also need to tilt or swivel the screen to reduce the amount of light glare, to avoid headaches and eye strain. And monitor arms can help you achieve all that with the minimum of fuss and effort.

Whether you're sitting, standing, or leaning, placing your monitor in the optimal position in this way will reduce the strain on your upper back, neck, and eyes. It can also give you more space on your physical desk. And more generally, it will make doing your design work more relaxed and enjoyable, and put you in a better frame of mind to be creative.

Before you choose one of the best monitors, though, you'll need to check that your monitor actually accepts mounting. If so, the monitor arm will need to have the correct bracket size. All the monitor arms on this list are compatible with the VESA standard, which is used in most modern monitors today. However, be aware that you will have to add a VESA adapter plate for this work on your iMac (you can now do so at point of purchase from the Apple Store). With that in mind, read on to discover the best monitor arms on the market today.

The best monitor arms available now

Best monitor arms: AmazonBasics Single Monitor Display Mounting Arm

(Image credit: Amazon Basics)

01. AmazonBasics Single Monitor Display Mounting Arm

Best monitor arm overall

Weight: 3.54kg / 7.8lbs | Dimensions: 65 x 15.2 x 41.1cm / 25.6 x 6 x 16.2in | Max monitor size: 32in | Max monitor weight: 25lbs / 11.3kg

Sturdy
Lightweight
Flexible
Cable management system limited

AmazonBasics' Single Monitor Display Mounting Arm is number one in our list of the best monitor arms, for a number of reasons. First, the initial set up is very straightforward. Then once you're ready, it's pretty intuitive to extend and retract the arm, tilt it to change your reading angles, and rotate it from landscape to portrait mode; you just need a light touch. The monitor can extend a monitor outward up to 25in (64cm), and it boasts a 13in (33cm) height range. 

You can secure the monitor arm to a wall, or attach it to the edge of a desk or table that's between 0.4in and 2.5in thick. When you're not using it, you can fold the arm back over its base for easy storage. It will hold up a monitor up to 32in in size and 25lbs in weight, and can be tilted back 70 degrees and forward 5 degrees. The cable management system isn't particularly great, but on the whole this is one of the most flexible and sturdy monitor arms around, and all at very reasonable price.

Best monitor arms: Ergotron LX Desk Mount LCD Monitor Arm

(Image credit: Ergotron)

02. Ergotron LX Desk Mount LCD Arm

The second best monitor arm overall

Weight: 3.6kg / 8lbs | Dimensions: 45.72 x 26.92 x 17.6cm / 18 x 10.6 x 6.93in | Max monitor size: 32in | Max monitor weight: 25lbs / 11.3kg

Sturdy
Flexible
Good cable management
Expensive

A close runner-up in our list of the best monitor arms, the Ergotron LX Desk Mount LCD Arm ticks all our boxes. Like the Amazon Basics model, it's lightweight while still being sturdy; it's easy to set up; and you can fold it away. You can use it to extend your monitor up to 25in / 64cm, and the height of the monitor up to 13in (although if you're taller than average we'd recommend its sister model; number 06 on our list). The cable management system is very good, the overall design is aesthetically pleasing, and in truth the only black mark against it is that it's slightly more expensive than other models.

Best monitor arms: 3M Dual-Swivel Monitor Arm

(Image credit: 3M)

03. 3M Dual-Swivel Monitor Arm

The best monitor arm for heavy monitors

Weight: 3.38kg / 7.45lbs | Dimensions: 46.7 x 22.9 x 13.8cm / 18 x 10.6 x 6.93in | Max monitor size: 27in | Max monitor weight: 13.6kg / 30lbs

Superior weight capacity
Great cable management
Sturdy
Challenging to assemble

If your monitor is particularly heavy, then this is one of the best monitor arms for your needs on the market today, with a weight capacity of 30lbs / 1.6kg. This sturdy and reliable model can be set up in two different ways: either clamp it to a desk that's up to 4.25in thick or use the grommet mount to fits desks up to 2.25in thick. Once you're set up, the monitor arm provides 7.5in / 19cm of height adjustability, extends 19.5in / 49.5cm from the base, and lets you rotate your monitor from landscape to portrait. Best of all, it's hollow so you can run your wires through it, making for a very tidy cable management solution. On the negative side, it's a little fiddly to assemble in practice.

Best monitor arms: Vari Dual-Monitor Arm

(Image credit: Vari)

04. Vari Dual-Monitor Arm

The best monitor arm for dual monitors

Weight: 7kg / 15.4lbs | Dimensions: 4.25 x 14in / 10.8 x 35.5cm | Max monitor size: 24in per arm | Max monitor size: 19.8lbs / 8.9kg per arm

Supports two monitors
Flexible
Challenging to assemble
Expensive

Need to support two monitors? Then this is our pick of the best monitor arms for that specific purpose. Featuring two arms, each of which can support up to 19.8 lbs / 8.9kg, this model offers a height adjustment range of 12in, and a maximum arm extension of 29in. And even more thrillingly, you can rotate your monitors a full 360 degrees. Designed to be used with any desk up to 2in thick, this model is admittedly a bit tricky to assemble, but at least the box includes tools to help you do so. There's a built-in cable management clip, too.

Best monitor arms: NB North Bayou Monitor Desk Mount Stand Full Motion Swivel Monitor Arm

(Image credit: NB North Bayou)

05. NB North Bayou Monitor Desk Mount Stand

The best budget monitor arm

Weight: 2.1kg / 4.6lbs | Dimensions: 38.5 x 28.5 x 9.5cm / 15.1 x 11.2 x 3.7in | Max monitor size: 30in | Max monitor weight: 19.8lbs / 8.9kg

Low price
Sturdy
Flexible
Can't rotate 90 degrees

Don't want to spend much money on a monitor arm, but still want something decent? Then we recommend NB's North Bayou Monitor Desk Mount Stand, which costs a mere fraction of the price of other models on this list. The gаs spring system makes it both sturdy and easy to adjust. You can tilt your monitor between +35 and -50 degrees, rotate it from -30 to +85 degrees, turn your display between landscape and portrait, and share your screen with others through the swivel function. It can be installed via clamp or grommet, and overall we're astounded by the excellent value this monitor arm represents.

Best monitor arms: Ergotron LX Desk Mount LCD Monitor Arm, Tall Pole

(Image credit: Ergotron)

06. Ergotron LX Desk Mount LCD Monitor Arm, Tall Pole

The best monitor arm for tall people

Weight: 4.99kg / 11lbs | Dimensions: 58.4 x 18.4 x 28.6cm / 23 x 7.2 x 11.2in | Max monitor size: 34in | Max monitor weight: 25lbs / 11.3kg

Tall
Sturdy
Flexible
Expensive

If you're more than six feet tall, then even the best monitor arms won't generally cater for your needs. Thankfully, Ergotron has a package that will help you out. Its Tall Pole version of the LX Desk Mount LCD Arm (which features as number two on our list) adds 6.25in / 15.8cm of pole length so you're able to raise your monitor significantly higher. Beyond that, it comes with all the specs and benefits of the shorter model, as listed previously, albeit at time of writing at a higher price.

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