I bought a simple desktop gadget with a computer and now I can’t live without it

material and soft
June 1, 2022, 1:37 p.m.

Proper lighting of a place to play, study or work is far more important than the amount of RAM or the RTX model on board. I have been using a control lamp for some time, without which I can no longer imagine my work.

When building our home booth with a computer, whether it is for gaming, studying, working or combining all these activities, we often make a big mistake. We focus too much on gigahertz, gigabytes, teraflops, and therefore on the parameters of the computer hardware itself, when in fact the most important elements should be an ergonomic chair, a comfortable desk and good lighting of the station itself. They are the ones who have a direct impact not only on the comfort of work, but above all on our health.

Let’s leave the subject of chairs for another occasion, which can cost as much as a good graphics card. In terms of lighting, of course nothing is better and healthier than natural lighthowever, it is not always possible to use it, especially in autumn and winter. The uniform ceiling light is not always an available choice, if only because of the late hour and other household members. So let’s take care of the right lamp on the desk – Good light in the monitor area improves concentration, working comfort and, above all, makes the eyes less tired.

There wasn’t much room on my table for a traditional desk lamp. Installing mood lighting behind the monitor, on the other hand, while visually effective, did not provide adequate working comfort and did not reduce eye strain satisfactorily. So I decided to use the increasingly popular LED lights mounted directly on the monitor. The choice turned out to be a bull’s eye! The low-profile beam above the monitor completed my desktop setup and became a must-have when sitting at the computer.

I bought a simple desktop gadget with a computer and now I can't live without it - illustration 1

The monitor lights blend nicely into the screen casing and don’t take up desk space. It is also easy to hide the cable.

The many benefits of a test light…

The lamp-monitor has practically the same advantages. Above all evenly illuminates the right desk area around the monitor and keyboard, without causing unwanted reflections on the screen. There’s also no need to worry that we’ll be offended by a “bare” bulb protruding slightly below the lampshade. Here everything is built in such a way that it is simply clear where it should be and to the extent that suits us.

This is the second biggest advantage of the control lamp – it is practically “invisible” and does not take up space on the desk. There are no cables anywhere, it doesn’t take up an extra outlet on a power strip, and there are no power “bricks” to hide either. It looks almost like an integral part of the monitor, so it shouldn’t bother even the biggest aesthetes. Connecting via USB cable allows you to easily hide a thin cable when connected to a computer case or, in my case, an active USB hub hidden under the table top. There’s also no problem mounting it on a laptop – as long as it’s not too small.

Other advantages are the characteristics of the device itself, which may differ slightly depending on the manufacturer of a specific model. As standard, however, you can count on smooth brightness adjustment, the choice of white temperature from warm and yellowish light color, through neutral, to cool white.. The latter is believed to help with concentration, while the warm color in turn promotes relaxation. One of the models comes with a remote control in the form of a button. This makes it easier to control the light intensity, but you have to take into account the need to replace the batteries from time to time.

I bought a simple desktop gadget with a computer and now I can't live without it - Illustration #2

This is how BenQ illustrates the differences between a regular desk lamp and a monitor lamp. Source: BenQ.com

…and virtually no flaws

Perhaps the most significant negative characteristic of the monitor lamp is a somewhat limited light range, especially compared to a desk lamp on an adjustable arm. For people who use many books or other documents placed on the sides of the computer, this can be a significant problem, since the elements furthest from the central place with a monitor and keyboard may not be sufficiently illuminated. A traditional desk lamp will work best here.

Owners of curved screens, on the other hand, have to take into account the low visual contrast, that is, mainly the aesthetic effect of mounting a straight beam on such a case. The clip itself, however, should hold firmly, as the manufacturers’ advertising materials show. There is at least one correctly curved model dedicated to such monitors, but it is not officially available on the Polish market.

For me, the only drawback (or rather a whim) is the lamp cannot be controlled by voice using the assistant speakerbut there is no model with this feature yet.

I bought a simple desktop gadget with a computer and now I can't live without it - Illustration #3

Discreet light source. Monitor light shines just right – in the right place, in the color and intensity you choose.

Overview of LED lamp models for the monitor

In Polish stores there are basically only two models, and they are in the same price category. The first is the Baseus I-Wok and the second is the Xiaomi Mi Computer Monitor light bar. Both products offer power supply via USB cable, beam rotation to adjust the angle of incidence of light, and adjust the color and intensity of light. Xiaomi’s advantage is also a wireless remote control and a slightly wider light temperature range from 2700K warm to 6500K cold. Baseus is 2800K to 5500K scale.

The product a little more “premium”, and therefore several times more expensive and available in foreign stores is the BenQ ScreenBar. The main distinguishing feature of the technical specification is the light sensor which can automatically adjust the brightness to current conditions. In the most expensive version, it also has a remote control, but it is connected to the lamp by a cable.

Models from individual manufacturers they may also differ in technical solutions in the construction of the mounting clip and the overall quality of the case. However, it should be taken into account that this device is inconspicuous and we usually install it only once – the main thing is that it illuminates well and does not take up space. I have been using the Baseus product for six months and cannot imagine working without this type of lighting. I have no issues with this model, but am tempted to check out other manufacturers – out of curiosity.

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