How To Make The Perfect DIY Studio Desk

The latest LeoMakes videos take a look at how to make the ‘perfect’ DIY studio desk.

“I just built the perfect studio desk (for me)!” he notes. Even if your needs differ, the videos offers ideas and inspiration for anyone planning to DIY a studio desk.

It’s build on a foundation of an IKEA standing desk, but with lots of custom work and mods to tailor the desk to add space for Eurorack modules, cable storage, a camera support, sliding keyboard and more.

Part 1, embedded above, offers an overview of the custom studio desk and background on design decisions. The second video, embedded below, digs further into the actual DIY build:

Check out the videos and let us know what you think about this awesome DIY studio desk project!

39 thoughts on “How To Make The Perfect DIY Studio Desk

  1. For someone trying to avoid cables I’m surprised to see so much eurorack on his desktop. It def looks nice & clean unplugged though

    1. I don’t see this as being contradictory. Eurorack is set up to be constantly plugged and unplugged. TRS in the back of a unit, not so much.

    1. if u stand u will bend your back forwards,
      if u sit its wrist down, fingers up
      and if want to wiggle a knob for 5 minutes you get an tennis arm because u need to hold your arm stretched out.

        1. I have an Ikea desk, similar. But, I have two racks on each side. Monitor in the middle. I bought a keyboard drawer underneath the desk. I think that’s a bit more ergonomic. Racks are not synthesizers, so no long term awkwardness.

        2. Come on man, it’s clearly so bad it hurts just thinking about it. If you can’t see it you have a problem in understanding the most basic principles of ergonomics.

        3. I see you’re not familiar with a comment section? The point is to find something to moan about in the video and then rush to this section to post it. Then everyone else can see how much more you know than the person in the video and admire your greatness. Rinse and repeat ad nauseum.

  2. The problem I have with this type of desk, is the screen is too far away. I end up bringing the monitor to the lower level and obstructing the racks. You could have a larger screen on the upper level, but that would mean looking up rather than straight ahead.

  3. The rack pods aren’t deep enough for some of my old synths and samplers, nor would I want them angled up and on the other side of the desk surface (my arms hurt just looking at it). Where do my desktop synths and drum machines go? There’s nowhere for desktop cables to run.

    This setup looks ideal for someone who uses a computer to mix audio and has hardware audio processors that require only the occasional tweak.

  4. i’m kind of wary of all these “perfect” DIY projects on YouTube claiming to be the “ultimate” version of something and that in just 5 minutes and a cost of 2 dollars … another way to know i don’t have to watch is because it is based on an Ikea desk.
    in order not to be only negative, i recommend people check out the various clones of the Output desk people have been building. looks great, better cable management and can be easily tailored to your dimensions while starting from scratch instead of an Ikea base

  5. Love this. Nice work. I did similar, but the area available for my desk is smaller. So I bolted a piece of butcher block to the wall. I used the same sliding shelf hw to create the keyboard shelf. I like the modular hutch he created. But I already have a 3×84 case to the side and I have a Korg M3 Rack module which I love and won’t really fit any where else. So it’s on the desk, angled up at me just under the monitor.

  6. Anyone read this line above:

    “I just built the perfect studio desk (for me)!” he notes. Even if your needs differ, the videos offers ideas and inspiration for anyone planning to DIY a studio desk.

    It’s what works for him. Your needs will probably be different. There’s good info here. So many Automatic Naysayers in Synthtopia comments.

  7. I don’t know, the comments on this site are frankly getting pretty pathetic. Did any of your people complaining actually watch the video? The guy makes some good points and this build clearly works for him.Anyone with half a brain would just look at this as some ideas and then use that as a base to make their own.

    I’d like to make a recommendation. Can we get an up voting and down voting system for Synthopia where we can hide all the stupid comments. They’re getting tiresome and it’s frankly getting to the point where there are other options out there with reasonable people commenting.

      1. Trashing Behringer is only a good thing though. I guess some people have there place filled with Behringer stuff therefor must justify. If Behringer went away tomorrow we wouldn’t miss a thing. Think about that for a bit. Something about a mirror..

    1. I’d love upvote/downvote functions. Many of the comments are dickish and plainly passive aggressive. (Although I do like the ones that give it to Behringer.) But this guy took the time to document his build and basically invite us into his home. To me that’s worthy of some appreciation.

  8. This design depends on how long HIS arms are, not yours or mine! Ergonomics are rarely one-size-fits-all. I guess its a slow week without something new from Uli to scorch here on Slagtopia. I enjoy the site once I filter that part out. Trolls eat the red goo from croaking old JD-800 keybeds. 😛

    1. It doesn’t really matter how long your arms are,
      Here it’s the size of 3 Laptops behind each other …
      To far away for anyone to be comfortable 😉
      You wouldn’t put your laptop on that side of the table to type on, would you? 😉

      It’s pretty simple, don’t hold your arms like a zombie
      If you rest your elbow on the table it’s even more wrist down fingers up …

      1. Don’t inhale to much of the red glue ^^

        My old piano teacher used to slap me on the wrists if I did hold my arms and hands like that.

  9. So i guess you guys have like inverted desks that go down away from you and sit on kneeling chairs? Personally i had my Ableton Push sawed in half and reassembled on a triangular foam wedge. I can easily crank out music for a solid 9 hours without needing a lunch.

  10. I guess this desk isn’t for small people with short arms but I’m about 2m and this looks like a great idea.

    The motor in the frame can handle 70kg which should be enough I think. Too bad that frame already cost €360,- but rest is pretty cheap to buy and easy to make.

    I’m probably gonna do this but with 2 racks on each side and free space in the middle where I’ll place a monitor on a vesa mount to angle it any height or angle I like.

  11. I like it when people invest time and energy into shaping their environment to better suit themselves. How much frustration and wasted creativity I could have spared myself if I had realized earlier how much such an investment pays back in the long run…

    Their desk would definitely NOT suit me but the process is very inspiring. Thx for that!

  12. I actually think it looks like a pretty good setup. It’s a refined version of what I have. My desk is one of those long, white, plastic “convention tables” and it suffices. I have two, 43″ monitors (bad eyes), my Hidrasynth, my computer keyboard, and my Da Vinci Resolve Speed Editor mini keyboard for video editing in the front. My MIDI controller is just to my left on a my old, wooden desk at a 90° angle from me (along with my printer and medications), and my home-build Windows tower to the left of me under my main desk with a BluRay burner and audio interface on top of that. Right now, I am headphones only but, sometime next year, I will be able to finally purchase a decent pair of mixing monitors. I will put those on a pair of speaker stand right behind the computer monitors with the speakers facing down at me just over the big screens.

    I am quite tall (6″4′) so, I would have to be able to raise my main desk pretty high in order to put a MIDI keyboard or keyboard synth on a shelf underneath the main desk and then raise my chair high enough to put me at the correct position for working.

  13. Build (or had build for me) several desks over the last 30 years and after 2-3 years… well, your set changes and its not ‘the perfect desk’ anymore. I think the ideal desk is a myth 😉

  14. Is it not more ideal to patch modular Vertical, than horizontal when you have more cases in play?

    I would normally not build eurorack into my desk. here I normally have audio mixing gear.

  15. he didnt “make” this desk – he modified an existing desk, which is itself quite an expensive desk to begin with

    the modifications are quite nice – but this is not some kind of “cheap, DIY project”

  16. At the start of the part 2 video you show a picture of the small 120cm wide Ikea Bekant desk. But I assume you used the large 160cm unit?

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