View Full Version : [Review/Photos] Home Office - IKEA

01-15-06, 09:10 PM
Now hear me out -- I think this does belong in "hardware." :D I mention some computer bits... ;)

Review of store and office gear from IKEA in Pittsburgh, PA January 2006

Part 1 - The Trip to Get Everything

I never really knew much about IKEA until my friend recently started up his own graphic design business. He set up a home office and decked it out with stuff from IKEA. Everything was good quality, looked modern, and was priced very decent. Since I was mulling over redoing my home office I checked out ikea.com but wasn't too impressed considering the raving my buddy did about the store. Getting more info from him I realized I probably need to check out a store to get the full experience.

Before the trip here are a few pointers if you ever go:

- Figure out WHAT you want/need.
- Get a budget and do NOT go over. The store is so overwhelming you can easily forget how much cash you are dropping.
- Measure everything you can about your space. Ceiling heights, CPU tower dimensions, windows, etc.
- Bring a vehicle that can fit what you are buying.
- Check ikea.com for box dimensions and product availability in the store you are going to. Overall ikea.com isn't that great, but for some things it's good to reference.

So with some Christmas money ready to burn my girlfriend and I took the 2.5 hour trip from Columbus, OH to Pittsburgh, PA.


The store was huge. We took 3 trips through the entire thing and bought stuff every round which took about 4.5 hours.

Store layouts vary but here is the general idea of how it works:

The top floor was the main showroom. There are various sections divided into living area. (Living rooms, kitchens, offices, etc.) Each section type has rooms set up like they could be in a house. Everything is tagged -- and if you want something, you simply write down the item # and take that with you to pick up later. Some of the smaller accessories you can grab while you are up there. My suggestion is if you see something you want, grab it because you may not be able to find it again.

The main floor contains the "marketplace" with all the smaller accessories and the warehouse where you get the items you wrote down at the showroom. You can then go checkout, pull your car around and load up.

Everything comes in separate boxes. So even if you have a large item it is usually divided up into 2 or more boxes making arranging stuff in your vehicle easier.

Part 2 - What We Got and How Much it Cost


My girlfriend is a teacher so she needed desk space and storage:


I got a corner desk to match her desk. It fits my honky 19" CRT with plenty of room to spare. The fact you can get any combo of legs, tabletop, and accessories makes it nice because you only have to get what you need:

The basic $10 keyboard rack is decent in size -- but I still needed to spread my keyboard off the edge a bit:

The computer rack is solid and could fit most cases. You can mount in either under your desk or to the side as I have done:

Chord racks were a necessity. I wanted all chords off the ground and hidden (mounted under desk towards rear):

Mounting the stereo on the wall helped keep the desk clear:

Ella liked the chairs:

1 large desk - $100
1 corner desk - $129
1 Cube storage unit - $100
2 swivel/rolling chairs - $19.99/ea
2 basic lamps / 1 desk lamp - $25
Magnetic wall strips / various shelving & desk accessories - $25
Wire drawer rack for under desk - $15
2 keyboard racks / 2 cpu racks / 2 cable racks - $50
not pictured: coffee table, magazine rack, some kitchen stuff - $45
TOTAL + TAX = $730

Part 3 - Ratings for those who like them

ikea.com website - 5/10 - the entire thing just comes across poorly compared to their stores. It is good however to find a store near you, order a catalogue, and check stock on some items.

Store - 9/10 - huge, tons of cool stuff, nicely setup. Good time killer but it is sort of confusing for a first time visitor.

Prices - 10/10 - the "pick it up yourself, put it together yourself" is great for keeping the prices down.

Quality/Construction of products - 9/10 - very solid furniture. Assembly did take time though, and to be honest my girlfriend was zero help. Not to stereotype girls but in general I would say it would be confusing for them to figure out the assembly. Also a cordless drill will make it so much easier.

Questions / Comments post in this thread or email mudcrutch /at/ gmail /dot/ com

Part 4 - Further online info for those interested

http://www.ikea.com - not that great for seeing what they really have. Order a catalogue if you are interested.

http://www.cwhartman.com/gallery/ikeapitts - older ikea Pittsburgh photo gallery not taken by me but it gives you an idea on how stuff is setup.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ikea - wiki IKEA entry.

01-16-06, 06:57 AM
Cool stuff.

Personally I wouldn't use that keyboard slide out panel. It's too small and I'd get cramped arms.

Btw, i can't see ventilation shafts ? 2 working ppl + pc hardware = heat in one room. Or is it justa matter of opening those windows ? (a bit chilly in winter time i assume)

01-16-06, 01:41 PM
i like your view..... i just have a buncha houses outside of my window :(

01-16-06, 02:26 PM
HOw sturdy are these tables?

I have simply 6 foot long folding table that served me well.

But after I got my widescreen LCD, I notice it wobbles a little bit when I furiously type ont he keyboard.. Never noticed it with a big heavy CRT. So I'm considering getting another table... I hope to find one as big as this folding table, but a bit more sturdy...

Just the slightest wobble sets it off.. I just nudged my wife's computer table we bought at office depot, and it wobbles too.

Hmm, maybe I'll just get a wallmount for this lcd.

01-16-06, 02:35 PM
I didn't know they had chord racks. That's great, I may have to get some myself.

01-16-06, 06:09 PM
Something tells me the computer rack would succumb to the sheer weight of the Mighty Stacker.

And 2.5 hours from Columbus to the nearest Ikea? Daaaaamn. That'd be a 3.5-4 hour drive from Cincy.

01-17-06, 08:36 AM
Thanks for all the comments. To answer a few questions:

Btw, i can't see ventilation shafts ? 2 working ppl + pc hardware = heat in one room. Or is it justa matter of opening those windows ?

the vent is on the back wall not pictured. we have central air/heat but you are right, it can get warm in there. we usually keep the ceiling fan on too and crack the windows when necessary.

HOw sturdy are these tables?

honestly VERY sturdy. a couple of adults could easily sit on the tops with no worries. they are also easy to clean -- any scuffs come off no problem.

01-17-06, 08:47 AM
My sister loves Ikea, she only shops there for furniture. I still can't find a nice large PC table without a keyboard drawer. My desk is about to crumble... one leg is already loose.

01-17-06, 10:38 AM
Unfortunantly, the closest ikea is at Seattle.. and thats 3 hours away each way.. blah... maybe we'll take a daytrip over there with the truck.

At first, I thought they were kinda expensive when I looked online.. but then I realized, that they were adjustable height, which I really want.. and nothing from like staples or whatnot sells anything thats adjustable height.

I think I'm going to buy a better seat first htough I want something with a better adjustable arm and back/lower back section... Like those ugly chairs I have at work.. they are so ugly, but they really do work...