Budget adjustable sit-stand desk: Crank or electric?

Are you looking for a cheaper standing desk? And you also need one that’s adjustable so that it can cover your needs and requirements. There are two types of adjustable sit-stand desks, the crank and the electric.

Which is more budget-friendly? Initially, crank adjustable desks are more budget-friendly than the electric ones. But does that mean that it’s always worth your moolah? I am going to list the pros and cons of each desk. And I am also going to list some of the most budget desks per category.

Crank adjustable desk vs electric, which one to choose?

Price war

Due to the simplicity of its mechanism, crank adjustable desks are inexpensive compared to their electric counterparts. These desks do not have a motor that electric desks use. Therefore resulting in a lower price tag. For example, a crank adjustable desk with the same dimensions and weight capacity will cost lower than the electric version of the same brand and dimensions.

Crank sit to stand desk

So it’s not conclusive that all hand crank adjustable desks are inexpensive compared to electrical ones. An entry-level electric desk might cost more than the newest hand crank desk.

So you have to compare an apple to an apple. For instance, the one motor Vert desk V3 with the Multi Mod hand crank desk also costs around the same. And there’s an angled hand crank adjustable desk that’s in the same price range as a fully electric standing desk. A premium hand crank adjustable desk Lotus station can cost over 2000 dollars. That’s almost the same price as a Herman Miller electric stand up desk.

So are hand crank desks more inexpensive than electric ones? MOST of the time, but not all the time.

Power requirement

Hand crank desks don’t have any motor, therefore, there isn’t any need for power or electricity. This setup is ideal for areas that experience regular power outages. Your desk can be left at an awkward height if the power went off whilst adjusting it. 

Electric desks, on the other hand, need power. You have to plug them into an electric source, if not, they will not function. And since the desk is plugged into an outlet, you have to consider this when placing the desk in your room. And there’s also limited mobility. The cables and wires hanging from the desk can limit your movement.

Weight capacity

When it comes to the carrying capacity, electric sit-stand desks are king. Because these desks have a motor, they can carry more weight. Even the average electric desk has a higher weight capacity than the hand-cranked ones. Manually adjustable desks often have 20-30 percent less weight capacity than fully electrical ones.

Ease of adjustment

The full electrical desk offers ease in adjustment. Since you have the motors to help you lift and lower the desk, you have to press the button and the desk will do the job for you. Whereas, with hand crank ones, the desk won’t adjust unless you manually crank it.

Electric standing desk


Electronics are more convenient, but they can be prone to glitches. Fully electric desks are no exception to this. At one point, you might experience a technical glitch or an issue in the motor that’ll make it difficult to adjust the desk. With the hand-cranked desk, this isn’t going to happen. So it can be more reliable.

Though if you’re going to buy premium or the best electric standing desks, it’ll take five to ten years before you begin to have problems with the motor. 

Noise levels

Because electrical desks have motors, they can be noisy. But that depends on the brand too. Some electric desks can make an irritating noise when you’re adjusting them. And you wouldn’t encounter that with manually adjustable desks.


One of the biggest disadvantages of the hand crank desk is that it might be longer to adjust. If you’re going to transition from a sitting to a standing position, it would typically need 30-70 rotations. And that’s 30-7 hand cranks. It might take a while.

Whereas you just need to press a button with the electric desks. And the more premium the brand is, the faster the adjustment time is. 


Some electric desks may have the risks of pinching. Since you don’t control the motion, you must keep your hands where you see them. You must also ensure to have pets and kid away from the desk while it’s in motion. This will minimize the risk of pinching. Though some brands eliminate this risk. But to be safe than sorry, you have to be mindful when using electrical desks.

Hand-cranked desks, on the other hand, don’t have this risk. Since you can stop the motion anytime you want, you’re; more in control. 

When is a hand crank desk ideal?

To get the most out of an affordable manually adjusted sit-stand desk, you have to make sure that it’s what you need. Otherwise, you might find the desk too lacking. Or you might be bothered by how much you need to rotate the desk to adjust it.

And it’s ideal for you if:

  • Your area often experience power outages
  • There isn’t any available power source
  • You don’t want to deal with future electronic glitches
  • You’re physically able to manually adjust the desk

When is a fully electrical desk ideal?

A full electric desk is more convenient, so to speak. And it’s perfect for you if:

  • You need a table that can adjust faster
  • If you’re elderly or physically challenged
  • You need a desk with more weight capacity
  • You’re more mindful

Some of the issues associated with an electric desk can be overcome if you’re going to choose the best brands. 

Budget-friendly hand crank adjustable desk

  • Crank standing desks from Stand up desk store

The Sit-Stand desk is a budget-friendly and reliable manual adjustable standing desk. What I love about this desk is that you can place the hand crank wherever you want. It gives you the liberty to place the desk wherever you fancy. 

And in terms of the weight capacity, it can accommodate 154 lbs. So it has the same weight capacity as a Flexipisot electric standing desk. 

Crank standing desk of standupdeskstore

And the price of these crank desks is also amazing. You can check it here, lots of options for you depend on what you really want

And it gets rid of two of the limitations of the hand-cranked desk. One, it has almost the same weight capacity as some electric sit-stand desks. And two, it’s a two-tier desk that offers more working space.

Read more[Stand Up Desk Store] Crank Adjustable Sit to Stand Two-Tier Desk with Steel Frame Review

  • Multi Mod hand-cranked standing desk

The Multi Mod, I find budget-friendly not only because of the lower cost. But also because of its features too. 

The weight capacity of the Multi Mod hand-cranked desk is fairly decent at 180 lbs. And unlike other manually adjusted desks, it’s a bit faster to adjust the. The electric version of this desk costs more expensive.

In terms of the cons, the handle pressure can be a bit heavy. You may find it a bit challenging to rotate even if you haven’t maximized the desk capacity yet. 

Budget-friendly electric standing desk

  • Flexispot electric standing desk

This electric standing desk costs so cheap in the market right now. You can check the price at the moment here. It’s one of the most popular budget-friendly and reliable ones in the market. You’ll enjoy all the convenience of a fully electric standing desk, albeit it’s one motor. It’s even more stable compared to other fully electric standing desks that have a higher price. 

Flexispot electric standing desk

And what I love the most is how quiet it adjusts. You won’t hear any clanking or irritating noise while the table is adjusting. So it rids off one of the cons of an electric desk. You don’t have to deal with the noise.

Flexispot electric standing desk wood version
Flexispot electric standing desk wood version

Do you need an electric desk with more weight capacity? It’s a sweet deal with Vari. The price of this desk is still fairly decent for a fully electric desk. Apart from the convenience of a two-motor stand desk, it has a heavier weight capacity of 200 lbs.

Vari electric standing desk

>>>>> Check the price at the moment of this desk

And this is also one gorgeous desk with robust steel construction. And it can also accommodate users who are taller than 6 feet. Though it can be wobbly when the desk is at its maximum height. You can purchase the one with the crossbeam to eliminate the wobbles. 

Which desk is the most affordable?

The answer to this question lies in what you need. And what desk can fulfill your requirements? Though it’s standard to buy a hand crank desk if you’re looking for an inexpensive one. But if you cannot handle the manual adjustment, it’s not for you. You might not use the desk at all. And there are also inexpensive electric standing desks that can meet your budget.

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