The Perfect Set Up for PC Work and Gaming
So, you’re a gamer who must now work from home? This is not an uncommon occurrence in the world we live in right now. The worldwide pandemic has forced many people to work from home over the past two years.
Are you baffled about how to turn your game table into a shared work environment? Well, it’s actually not too difficult to find the perfect balance for your gaming table/work table combination.
Read our top 10 tips below to bring the ideal ‘hybrid’ workspace together. There is no reason to separate your business and leisure when you could unite them to provide a satisfying, all-in-one workstation.
Top 10 Tips to Set Up Your new Work Table/Gaming Table
We’ve scoured high and low for some of the best tips for you to use when transforming your gaming table into an office work table. Of course, we want you to make the transition without extracting the fun from the space. When done properly, you’ll be able to both work hard and game in a perfectly balanced environment.
1. The Best Colour for the Space
While bright colors and neon lights are the perfect pairings for video games, they can be a bit overwhelming for the work table space. Science has proven that different colors can have different effects on your mood and productivity. The science behind these theories is called “Colour Psychology.” As such, choosing the correct wall colors to go with your work/gaming table may be vitally important to your performance in the long run.
The color choice is not so straightforward, as various colors stimulate different emotions. Artistic people may perform better with yellow colors as yellow stimulates creativity. On the other hand, those in the finance industry might perform better in a green office environment, as green (the color of money) has a very calming and reassuring effect on people.
However, it is generally accepted that lighter tones are more conducive to a calmer and more productive setting. Light shades of green, grey, and blue are always winners.
2. Ergonomics for Your Health
Ergonomics is the study of how people work in their environment. It then studies how things can be designed and arranged in order to make our interactions safer and more efficient. When setting up your work table, you want it to be ergonomically efficient, so that you do not end up with a sore neck, shoulders, or back.
There are plenty of ergonomic suggestions to bear in mind to make sure that you maintain a good posture
- Screen height: Your monitor/screen should be raised so that the top of the screen is in line with your eyes. This will force your neck and back into a suitable upright position. A low screen promotes unnecessary pressure on the neck and is conducive to slouching. The monitor should also be about an arm’s length away from you for the best results.
- Reaching: You will want to avoid reaching for things on your work table. As such, it will be best to position the things you use most in close proximity for easy handling.
- Keyboard: Position your keyboard with a slight tilt towards you so that your wrists remain flat when typing. Elevated wrists for excessive periods could increase your chances of developing carpal tunnel syndrome, which is extremely painful.
Some research has shown that standing while working can ease back pain and increase productivity. As such standing desks are becoming a trend in contemporary workplaces. This leads us to the next consideration when setting up your gaming table or workstation – The best desk option.
3. The Best Work/Gaming Table
As we mentioned in the section on ergonomics above, standing desks are proven to decrease spinal pressure and increase productivity. As such, it may be worth exploring this option. There are even companies that sell height adjustable work tables. These can be set easily for either sitting or standing. Of course, they may not fit everyone’s budget.
Space is another thing to consider when choosing your work table. There is no point in buying a 3-foot (90cm) desk, as it will be miles too small for you to work on efficiently. Remember that you want space to both game and work from. As such, you may want to consider a desk with a minimum length of 60 inches (152.4cm) and a width of 30 inches (76.2cm).
If you are not restricted to a small space an even better idea might be to purchase an L-shaped work table. This way, you can dedicate one length of the desk to business and the other length to pleasure.
4. Multiple Monitor Setup
The ultimate gaming table station will always have more than one monitor/screen. While you play on one screen, the other can be used to control your Discord chat server or game tracking software. While the benefits for gaming are clear, the advantages that multiple screens lend to office work are immeasurable.
You can multi-task by opening various applications and programs at once. While some more creative jobs may require three or more screens, two monitors will do just fine for just about any other vocation out there. They also won’t take up excessive work table space.
Consider purchasing monitor mounts or stands to adjust your screens to the correct ergonomic height to improve your posture. Mounts are far more versatile than stands are, and save a lot more space on the work table. However, they are quite costly. Also, be sure that your existing monitors have mounting holes before purchasing mounts.
5. Keyboard and Mouse
Most gaming mice and mousepads are perfect for office work. As such, you needn’t worry about changing them out. Normal office mice and pads, however, will not work well for gaming.
You may want to give a second thought to your keyboard. Gaming demands that you purchase a keyboard that can handle some abuse. As such a mechanical keyboard is the wisest choice. However, many gaming keyboards are shorter than office variants and do not include numerical pads. If you are involved in finance, this is an absolute ‘no-no’ for your work table.
Thankfully, there are plenty of decent full-sized gaming keyboards out there that include the numerical keypad. Be sure to purchase one of these. You can look to keyboards from providers such as Corsair, Logitech, and Razer for top-performing options.
Gaming keyboards are prone to be quite noisy. The clickety-clack sounds are often quite distracting. Fortunately, there are mechanical gaming keyboards with softer key sounds. These may be best suited to your needs.
6. PC Box and USB Hub
Try and store your main computer tower case under your gaming table or on a stand away from your desk. This will spare you a little more room on the work table surface. In fact, some gaming cases come with wall mountings, which could be the answer you are looking for.
Of course, this could make reaching the PC difficult when you want to plug in an SD card or USB stick. We, therefore, recommend that you invest in a USB hub and run it from your PC to just under your gaming/work tabletop (see image above). This way, you have easy access to the ports, should you need them.
7. The Perfect Chair to Suit Your Work Table
Returning to the issue of ergonomics, buying the correct chair is one of the most significant decisions you will have to make. Whether seated at a gaming table or a work orientated bench, you’ll need to use a chair that gives you full back, neck, and head support. All top-of-the-range office and gaming chairs will provide targeted lumbar and neck cushions for optimum comfort.
It’s best to get a chair with adjustable armrests that you can line up with the keyboard and mouse. Ergonomically, the best alignment for your arms and wrists is in line with the desktop.
The style you choose is up to personal preference. Gaming chairs are sportier looking, whereas office chairs look more professional. The choice is yours, as long as your option provides the comfort and support you need.
8. Gaming Table Ambience
Now for aesthetics. We know that gamers love backlighting. But as we said earlier, bright lights are not conducive to a relaxed working environment. As such, we recommend that you use softer pastel color shades instead. You can simply purchase LED strings and place them behind the desk to give that ambient feel. Or you can unplug your lighting during working hours and turn them on at night for your gaming sessions.
You can also bring color to the work table by purchasing a keyboard, mouse, and computer case that offer RGB lighting. Once again, opt for those that offer pastel shades over those with primary color lighting.
9. Cable Control
For the sake of safety (and aesthetics), we recommend that you tidy up your computer cables effectively. You can either opt to use cable sleeves to keep all the cords together or fasten cable trays under the work table. This way, you can lie the cords in them near the top of the desk to keep them away from your feet.
You should try to elevate your multi-plugs as well. Either fasten them to the wall or place them under a footrest on the floor. You will want to make sure that you are not able to kick any of the plugs while seated at the table.
10. A Neat Work Table
A stress management case study at Harvard University revealed that the physical environment of the workplace has a significant effect on our work performance. It says, “when our space is a mess, so are we.”
Clutter on the work table can negatively affect our cognition, emotion, and behavior. This, in turn, affects our decision-making abilities and our interactions with others. It also reduces our ability to focus.
In short, be sure to keep your work table clean and tidy. Keep only the most necessary things on the tabletop. All other stationery should be stashed in drawers and papers should be neatly filed away for easy access in the future.
Put our top tips together to work for you and you should see a painless transition between work and play each day. Our tips work together to present you with a functional, ergonomic, and psychologically sound way to set up the perfect hybrid station.
If, you’d like help choosing the best equipment for your gaming table, be sure to read our article on the best gifts for gamers. It touches on what quality features to look out for when buying the best tech.