Last year, I reviewed three portable laptop stands, suitable for coworking when you commute and hotdesk, as opposed to if you have a dedicated desk. The Roost 2 was the unequivocal winner and it became my everyday stand.
Earlier this year, the designers of a new stand, called the Majextand, sent me a prototype to try out. I’ve used it for about six weeks now, enough to get a solid feel for it. It has two important advantages over the Roost 2. First, it’s even smaller and lighter than the ingeniously engineered Roost 2. Second, it’s one less thing to take out of the bag when setting up in the morning, because it’s attached to the bottom of your laptop. It’s not perfect, as I explain below, but it’s an effective design. Would it replace my beloved Roost 2?
The Majextand’s trick is that it attaches to the bottom of your laptop like a flat sheet of stamped metal, with two adhesive strips. It’s only 1.7mm thick (0.07”) and 5.5” square, and weighs only 4.8 ounces. So it’s always with you and you won’t notice it when you’re not using it. To be sure, it comes with rubber foot pads that you can use to boost your laptop’s existing feet, so that the laptop still sits flat when the Majetand is not expanded. The additional feet were definitely appreciated. The overall build quality feels solid.
To deploy the Majextand, you pull two hinged sections out to form a triangular tube, which then locks into place. The laptop is then supported by one edge of that triangular tube and by the laptop’s front edge. (It’s easier to see in the photograph than to explain.) The result is more stable than it looks: The laptop doesn't budge when I shake the table. You break it down simply by depressing tabs on each hinged section and it folds back into place. No need to stow and pack it separately, because it’s attached to the laptop. Clever and effective.
With that said, there are few things to bear in mind. First, it takes a little thought to get it positioned right, because it has to be close to the hinge (or else it could tip backward) and mounted exactly parallel to the front edge of your laptop. It also can’t cover-up access to essential components. This isn’t an issue on a MacBook, but other laptops have things like removable battery packs that might be covered over by the stand. My backup computer is an old ThinkPad, for example, and the Majextand would cover a few access screws.
If those form factor details work out for you, there’s one other thing to bear in mind. The Majextand does not raise your laptop screen as high as other laptop stands. The general guideline for a laptop stand is to put the center of the screen just slightly lower than eye level or to put the top of the screen just above eye level. The Roost 2’s highest and lowest height adjustments put the center of my MacBook Air at about 15 ¼” or 12”, above the desktop, respectively. The highest height seems to fit the recommended height for me.
With the Majextand, the center of the screen is about 9 ¼” above the desktop. The designer notes that the bottom of the screen is the same height as the bottom of an Apple Cinema Display. But that places all of a MacBook Air display significantly below eye level.
I thought the lower height would be a limitation for me. But after using the stand for six weeks, it turns out I’m comfortable with that height. I wear glasses with progressive lenses, so the lower screen works in my favor, because I have to look through the bottom half of my glasses anyway.
And it’s surprisingly nice to take one fewer thing out of my bag (laptop, keyboard, mouse, power adapter, headphones…) every morning. So, although I was skeptical when I was first contacted, the Majextand has become my new everyday laptop stand.
I recommend the stand, as long as you’re comfortable with the limitations I’ve noted.
Edit: You can purchase the Majextand here: www.majextand.com/
I've been coworking since 2010. which has taught me a few things about making it work. I have a lot left to learn.