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What’s on your desk, Alex Heath?

Minimalist and productive

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Photo by Alex Heath / The Verge

Alex Heath is deputy editor at The Verge who works with our creators team and covers Meta along with the social media industry more broadly. Covering Meta in-depth has also led him to cover augmented and virtual reality. He’s also the co-host of the newest season of Land of the Giants, Vox Media’s narrative podcast series on the tech giants. This season is, of course, all about Meta.

Tell us about your desk.

My desk is a Blue Dot Stash desk in the walnut and putty gray finish. I’ve had it for a couple of years now and absolutely love it. I have it stationed in the home office that I share with my wife.

top of desk with keyboard, mouse pad, laptop
A minimalist set of desk gear.

Now tell us about your chair.

I had never splurged on a nice office chair until I realized in 2019 that I would be working from home for the foreseeable future. I opted for the Herman Miller Setu chair, which to me strikes the perfect balance of function, comfort, and sleek design.

Naturally, we want to know about the tech you’re using: computers, monitors, etc.

I am fairly minimalist with my desk gear. My work computer is a 2020 MacBook Air. My desktop monitor is a 24-inch Dell UltraSharp U2415. I like it fine, but I’m planning on upgrading to a 4K or ultrawide monitor in the near future.

My external webcam is made by NexiGo. It captures at 1080p and has a built-in ring light that I wish were brighter and never use. I’m also on the hunt for a better webcam and lighting situation since the room my desk is in doesn’t get great lighting at the angle I’m facing while seated.

Since I started co-hosting the podcast Land of the Giants this year, I’ve added OWC’s Thunderbolt 3 Dock for connecting to my Electro-Voice RE27N/D microphone. It’s attached to a Stage Rocker low-profile stand, which works but isn’t super conducive to my desk setup since the back of it is fairly long and backs into the wall. The mic is plugged into a Focusrite Scarlett Solo audio interface, which is very easy to use for an audio novice like me.

Focusrite Scarlet Solo audio interface

An easy-to-use audio interface to produce studio-quality music.

I’m using two Huanuo monitor stand risers for my MacBook and Dell monitor. I like them because they can be moved easily and the height is adjustable. They’re also minimal.

My keyboard and mouse are really straightforward: an Apple Magic keyboard and black Magic Mouse. I have big hands and probably need to upgrade to a full-size keyboard with a number pad. The mousepad is made by Ktrio.

I almost always have either Apple’s AirPods Pro or Max headphones on throughout the day, either to take calls or listen to music.

Apple AirPods Max

$54913% off

Apple’s AirPods Max feature exemplary build quality, sound phenomenal, and keep up with the best at noise cancellation.

You have a smaller workspace than many of your colleagues. Do you find that an issue?

Not really. I keep my desk surface relatively clean, and in general try to keep any peripheral gear or items (cables, business cards, etc.) in my single drawer. I’ve tried to embrace the less is more virtue with my office setup, and I’ve found it to suit me well. Since I share an office space with my wife, I’m often taking calls in other rooms or on a patio. If one of us has a bunch of Zoom meetings back to back, the other will go to another room and work for a bit. It’s nice to change up your physical space throughout the day when you’re working from home.

audio interface under a monitor stand
A solid audio setup for a podcast.
An Electro-Voice mic attached to a low-profile stand.
Superman Heroclix
A Superman HeroClix from college.

Anything special about the figurine on your monitor stand, or do you just like Superman?

I’m not very sentimental. That said, Superman was my favorite superhero growing up, and for some reason I’ve held onto this HeroClix I found early on in college. It doesn’t have much deeper meaning beyond that!

I like the “opening hours” poster!

Thanks! I do, too. All credit to my wife, Chloe. It’s a framed tea towel by David Shrigley.

desk with “closed” sign on wall
The framed tea towel proclaims opening hours.

 Photography by Alex Heath / The Verge

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