Secretlab MAGNUS Pro review - a sit-to-stand ovation


Secretlab MAGNUS Pro desk with monitor attached and plenty of items sitting on top of it
Credit: StealthOptional

It's hard to innovate on desks - most people are happy purchasing something that suits their needs, which usually falls into one of two categories; a sitting desk or a standing desk, both of which should hold your various peripherals and, of course, the best gaming monitor that your needs require. Sometimes, it's enough to be extremely high quality, and that's exactly what the Secretlab MAGNUS Pro offers.

The MAGNUS Pro from Secretlab is the world’s first sit-to-stand metal desk that has a fully-integrated power supply column (patent pending) and regardless of how you like your gaming setup arranged, this endlessly customisable desk will find a way to fit in.

Before I get further into my review, it's worth noting that Secretlab did send me a dual monitor for the MAGNUS Pro, but unfortunately, my second monitor was broken beyond repair prior to the desk's arrival and departed this mortal realm. The images of the monitor arm show the dual monitor mount, but with only a sole (and lonely) monitor on it.

The desk arrived in remarkably sturdy branded packaging, accompanied by black-coloured Styrofoam lining each box, really emphasising the professional atmosphere of the desk setup. The basic components of the desk itself, those being the top, legs, cable tray, and hinged back, arrived in two different boxes, while the peripherals I chose arrived in four more. All of them arrived in the same delivery, though, so I didn’t have to worry about having to wait longer to be able to set up my desk.

Secretlab MAGNUS Pro desk at full standing height
click to enlarge
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Credit: StealthOptional

It’s important to note that the desk is heavy. This is not your traditional office desk. One box weighed 71kg alone - although once opened, each individual component was perfectly fine to carry by itself. The manual states that two people should assemble the MAGNUS Pro and I can’t stress enough that you need two people minimum, unless you’re conveniently extremely buff and dexterous at the same time. Alas, I live alone, so I had to assemble the entire desk myself, and my muscles still hurt several days later. Please follow the manual on this one. Get a friend or neighbour to come put it together with you.

Having said that, assembly was still relatively easy, even by myself. The instructions are straightforward and easy to follow and all tools are provided for you, along with spare screws in case you happen to lose some along the line. Each component of the MAGNUS Pro felt well-made and of high quality and, once entirely built, the desk felt almost formidable amongst the mostly IKEA-sourced furniture in my bedroom.

The hardest part of the setup was a tie between flipping the desk after attaching the legs and cable tray (which, I hasten to emphasise, shouldn’t be a problem for two people) and laying down the MAGPAD Desk Mat due to how incredibly strong the magnets are and how determined it is to adhere to the surface of the desk. Its insistence on staying put isn’t a bad thing, though - adjustments to the desk mat can be finetuned down to what feels like a single millimetre and, once applied, you don’t have to worry about anything on the desk potentially scratching the surface. The MAGPAD Desk Mat is available in a range of designs and is made of premium leatherette, so it’s nice both on the eyes and to the touch.

Speaking of things that are aesthetically pleasing, the control panel for the MAGNUS Pro blends seamlessly into the desk’s front edge, with the controls being touchscreen and the only actual button being a switch that allows you to put the control panel into standby mode. Standby mode simply deactivates the buttons on the control panel, which means you can’t accidentally brush against them and send your desk flying into orbit - not that you could do that anyway, as the MAGNUS Pro not only adjusts its height at a sensible speed but also has an anti-collision feature that prevents the desk from crashing into obstacles. You also have three numbered buttons for saving height presets, meaning you can go from your preferred sitting height to your preferred standing height at the literal touch of a button.

Secretlab MAGNUS Pro control panel
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Credit: StealthOptional

For those who enjoy haptics, you’ll be pleased to know that the touchscreen buttons produce a satisfying clicking noise when pressed, so you’ll know that you’ve activated something (if the desk moving isn’t enough of a giveaway). The buttons are also responsive without being overly sensitive, meaning there’s no horrendous lag between touching them and the desk responding, but an accidental brush won’t mess up your settings.

The most surprising part of the MAGNUS Pro is just how tall it can be. It maxes out at 1.25 metres (49.2 inches) which should be plenty of height for the average person and was definitely too tall for my 5’5” self. When the desk is at its lowest height of 0.65 metres (25.5 inches), there’s still plenty of space underneath for gaming accessories, cats, leg room, or just storage. Secretlab claims the motor lifespan test resulted in 20,000 up and down cycles, so you don’t have to worry about the desk sputtering out any time soon - and even if you do somehow manage to exhaust the motor, there’s a five year warranty on the MAGNUS Pro, so you can keep adjusting your desk height without any worries.

Secretlab MAGNUS Pro arm mount for monitor
click to enlarge
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Credit: StealthOptional

The desk itself is also incredibly spacious. Even with both monitors set up on the 1.5 metre model, the MAGNUS Pro continues to have plenty of room for things such as peripherals, many anime figures, or even just nothing if you’re into minimalism. The desk’s capacity for cable management means that you have even more space. The dual monitor mount allows you to run cables through the arms (secured in place by a magnetic strip) and down into the cable tray at the back of the desk and said tray not only has space for cables but also for extension leads, meaning you can just slap all your plugs into the extension strip in the cable tray and maintain the illusion of an entirely cable free setup.

Overall, the MAGNUS Pro from Secretlab is honestly one of the best desks available for gaming right now. The price tag might be slightly off putting, especially if you’re upgrading to a professional gaming desk for the first time, but it’s entirely justified by just how well built it is. It’s sturdy, it’s reliable, it has excellent cable management, it’s flexible in height so it’s suitable for all types of desk setups, and it offers a nice wide range of add-ons so you can customise it exactly to your liking. Whether you prefer your desk to have a minimalist clean look or be a paragon of maximalist clutter, the MAGNUS Pro can and will cater to your tastes.

Secretlab MAGNUS Pro review
The Secretlab MAGNUS Pro doesn't revolutionise desks, but it doesn't need to. With unparalleled high-quality parts, a spacious design, and great amounts of cable management to stop even the most interconnected and strangest PC setups, the Secretlab MAGNUS Pro is one of the best gaming desks on the market, if not THE best.
10 out of 10

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