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Best home office tech and supplies: Get set up to work from home

best home office tech
(Image credit: Future)

A growing number of companies are encouraging people to work from home — in some cases, they're even making it mandatory. So it's important that you get your home office set up properly with the best home office supplies and best home office tech.

We've rounded up all the essential gear you'll need — from laptops to printers to keyboard and desk chairs — so that your home is as productive as your workplace. 

If you have to work from home for an extended time, you'll want to make sure that you have a dedicated home office space, free from distractions — no sitting in front of the couch binge-watching Netflix when you should be answering email. 

Here's the best home office gear you can buy today

Best home office tech: Acer Aspire 5

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

1. Acer Aspire 5 (Core i3, 2019)

Good performance at a solid price

Specifications
CPU: Intel Core i3-8145U
GPU: Intel UHD Graphics 620
RAM: 4GB
Storage: 128GB SSD
Display: 15.6-inch, 1080p
Size: 14.3 x 9.9 x 0.7 inches
Weight: 3.8 pounds
Reasons to buy
+Strong performance+Long battery life+Bright, 1080p display+Affordable
Reasons to avoid
-Middling graphics-Questionable build quality

You don't need to spend a lot of money on a laptop if all you're using it for is editing documents and spreadsheets and sending email. The Acer Aspire 5 is the best laptop under $500, because it delivers on the essentials: It has a 15.6-inch display with a 1080p resolution — a rare resolution for a budget laptop — that's a fairly bright 276 nits. If you need something more powerful, we recommend you check out our picks for the best laptops overall, which include models with discrete GPUs.

Inside is an 8th Gen Intel Core i3 and 4GB of RAM, plenty powerful for almost all office-related tasks. And, with a battery life of nearly 9 hours, you won’t be wedded to an outlet, either. 

Read our full Acer Aspire 5 review.

Best home office tech: LG 24MP59G-P (Credit: LG)

(Image credit: LG)

2. LG 24MP59G-P

A great cheap monitor

Specifications
Screen Size and Resolution: 24 inches, 1920 x 1080
Maximum Refresh Rate: 75 Hz
Response Time: 5ms GTG, 1ms MBR
G-Sync/FreeSync Compatible: FreeSync
Aspect Ratio: 16:9
Panel Type: IPS
Inputs: DisplayPort, HDMI
Reasons to buy
+IPS panel+Bright+Fast response times
Reasons to avoid
-So-so color quality

Our favorite budget gaming monitor is great for productivity. The LG 24MP59G-P is bright and responsive, and is one of the few displays under $200 with in-plane switching, meaning that it has great off-axis viewing angles. The LG monitor also has AMD FreeSync, which helps improve graphics performance for those who have laptops with AMD chips.

In our tests, we found color reproduction to be pretty good, with decent color gamut (93.3 percent) but solid accuracy (Delta-E 0.74). We thought the LG's build was stylish and sturdy, and found that its small four-direction joystick made it easy to navigate menus quickly.

Read our full LG 24MP59G-P review.

Credit: Logitech

(Image credit: Logitech)

3. Logitech K800

An inexpensive wireless keyboard

Specifications
Size: 8.19 x 2.31 x 18.44 inches
Weight: 2.2 pounds
Reasons to buy
+Backlighting+Wireless+Integrated wrist rest
Reasons to avoid
-No separate media keys

Your laptop's keyboard is probably fine, but if you want something more spacious, we suggest the Logitech K800, a wireless keyboard with a full-size number pad. Available for $60, it's a relatively inexpensive way to make typing at home more comfortable. 

Thanks to a proximity sensor, the K800's backlit keys automatically light up as your hands get close. It also boasts an integrated wrist rest. We just wish there were separate media controls, rather than having to rely on the function keys. Logitech Ergo K860 is a slightly more premium alternative. 

Credit: Future

(Image credit: Future)

4. Logitech MX Master 2S

An excellent productivity mouse

Specifications
DPI: 4,000
Ambidextrous: No/Right-handed
Wireless: Yes/Bluetooth
Buttons: 7
Size: 5.0 x 3.4 x 2 inches
Weight: 5.1 ounces
Reasons to buy
+Customizable buttons
Reasons to avoid
-Right-handed only

Next to a keyboard, a good productivity mouse is essential for keeping comfortable when typing and navigating web pages and documents. The Logitech MX Master 2S Bluetooth mouse has a great ergonomic design, right- and left buttons, as well as both a vertical and a horizontal scroll wheel. 

At 4,000 DPI, it's a very precise mouse, and thanks to Logitech's software, you can connect it to up to three devices simultaneously. Its battery will last up to 70 days, and it's quick to recharge, too. While the Logitech MX Master 2S is a little on the pricey side, your hand and wrist will thank you.

If the Master 2S doesn't meet your needs, you can find the best mouse for your workflow in our buying guide.

Logitech C920S HD Webcam. Credit: Logitech

(Image credit: Logitech)

Logitech C920S HD Webcam

Videoconference with ease

Specifications
Resolution: 1080p/30 fps
Size: 3.7 x 1.1 x 0.9 inches
Cable length: 5 feet
Reasons to buy
+Empty List
Reasons to avoid
-Empty List

If anything, working from home means a lot of teleconferencing. If the webcam in your laptop isn't cutting it, then you'll need a good alternative. The Logitech C920s webcam has a few things going for it: A sharp 1080p resolution at 30 frames per second, dual microphones, and light correction if you have a dim working environment. Best of all, the C920s has a physical shutter that you can flip down to block the lens.

The Logitech Capture software also lets you customize the camera settings, pan and zoom, and even record vertical video, if that's your bag. The Logitech C920 works with both Mac and Windows, as well as Skype, Google Hangouts, and FaceTime for Mac.

Credit: TP-Link

(Image credit: TP-Link)

The best blend of speed and value

Specifications
Wi-Fi Spec: 802.11ac/Dual-Band
Number of Antennas/Removable: 3/Yes
Ports: Four 1-Gbps LAN, 1 WAN, 1 USB 2.0, 1 USB 3.0
Peak Throughput: 939.6 Mbps
Size: 8.5 x 7.5 x 1.5 inches
Reasons to buy
+Top performer+Inexpensive+Built-in antivirus protection+Two-year warranty
Reasons to avoid
-Runs hot

When you have a lot of devices connected to the internet, you'll need a router that can handle all that traffic. The TP-Link Archer C2300 may look unassuming, but the router is very powerful for its size and price, acing our performance tests (nearly a gigabit per second of data) and punching through walls and ceilings with aplomb. 

We also liked that the Archer C2300 has built-in optimization tools, such as antivirus, QoS and parental controls. It's also backed by a two-year warranty, which is why it's also our pick for the best Wi-Fi router.

Read our full TP-Link Archer C2300 review.

Credit: Sennheiser

(Image credit: Sennheiser)

6. Sennheiser HD 4.50 BTNC

Solid performance at a midrange price

Specifications
Size and Weight: 10.2 x 7.1 x 3.9 inches, 8.4 ounces
Battery Life (Rated): 19 hours (NC on);25 hours (NC off)
Bluetooth Range: 30 feet (10 meters)
Digital Assistant Support: Yes
Reasons to buy
+Neutral-sounding mids and highs+Relaxed fit+Simple controls+NFC support
Reasons to avoid
-Mediocre battery-Noise cancellation could be stronger

If you're working from home, chances are there are going to be distractions — your kids playing in the other room, your dog barking, and more — so a good pair of noise-cancelling headphones can come in handy. 

The Sennheiser HD 4.50 BTNC are some of the best cheap noise-cancelling headphones because they cost less than $100, yet are comfortable to wear, have a good audio profile, and are pretty effective at blocking out distractions. Though  not as refined as the best noise-cancelling headphones, the Sennheisers do well for the price.

See our full Sennheiser HD 4.50 BTNC review.

Credit: Canon

(Image credit: Canon)

7. Canon Pixma TS9120

Best all-in-one printer

Specifications
Printer Type: Inkjet
Features: Print, copy, scan
Display: 5-inch color touch-screen
Ink/Toner: Six cartridges (pigment black, dye black, photo blue, cyan, magenta and yellow)
Connectivity: 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi, Ethernet, USB 2.0
Reasons to buy
+Fast printing and scanning speeds, with very fast color copying+Six individual ink cartridges+Large, 5-inch color touch screen
Reasons to avoid
-Ink costs and two-sided printing speeds are just average-Paper cassette feels a bit flimsy

If you're working from home, you can't use the office copy machine for scanning, faxing, and printing out documents, so you'll need a good printer. Based on our tests, the Canon Pixma TS9120 is the best all-in-one printer there is, as it's fast and delivers quality prints for photos and documents. 

The Pixma was also good at scanning and copying, and was easily controlled via its 5-inch color touch screen. This printer uses six individual color cartridges, and refills are reasonably priced. 

Read our full Canon Pixma TS9120 review.

Credit: Hom

(Image credit: Hon)

8. Hon Exposure

A good office chair for not a lot of money

Specifications
Size: 42.5 x 26.8 x 26.5 inches
Seat depth: 20 inches
Seat width: 20 inches
Back width: 19 inches
Reasons to buy
+Empty List
Reasons to avoid
-Empty List

Sure, you could spend upward of a grand on a Herman Miller Aeron, but unless you're planning to work from home permanently, you don't need to go all out on an office chair. After researching several review sites and online retailers, we think the Hon Exposure is the best home office chair for people on a budget.

The Hon Exposure costs around $200, and has a breathable mesh back, adjustable arms and height, and lumbar support. It can recline, too, so you can get in the most comfortable position for editing PowerPoint presentations. 

Mike Prospero

Michael A. Prospero is the deputy editor at Tom’s Guide overseeing the smart home, drones, and fitness/wearables categories. When he’s not testing out the latest running watch, skiing or training for a marathon, he’s probably using the latest sous vide machine or some other cooking gadget.