9 Home Office Essentials

Every guy who does it knows: Working from home is one of life's great pleasures. (More convenience, less annoyance, and zero commute?) You can make your office a bona fide career booster, though, by kitting the space out with some truly next-level gear—like these nine essentials.

Modern white desk with a hidden compartment. photo

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CB2 Chamber Desk

Modern design fans will love the clean lines of this sleek desk, which at first appears to be little more than a minimalist writing table mounted on a rustic oak base. On closer inspection, though, the glossy white lacquer worktop slides open, revealing nine square feet of stash space for all the assorted detritus—headphones, chargers, notebook and pen, business cards, chopsticks, receipts, memos—that inevitably washes up on a busy man's desk. That means you can maintain a clean workspace and, just maybe, a clear mind. ($499; cb2.com)

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Black rolling desk chair. photo

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Humanscale Freedom Task Chair with Headrest

We're all at least vaguely aware by now that sitting all day is killing our hearts and ruining our spines, but most of us still work jobs that park us in front of a computer for 40-plus hours a week. If we're going to die a slow death by sitting, we might as well be comfortable, and that's where the Freedom comes in. Designed by Niels Diffrient to automatically adapt to the user as he shifts in his seat, the Freedom takes the work out of ergonomics, dispensing with finicky recline levers and twiddly knobs altogether. Comfortable, functional, and strikingly beautiful—especially in the leather finish—this icon of ergonomic design is worth every penny for day-in-day-out comfort. (from $1,169; humanscale.com)

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Desk by a window with a laptop and desk lamp sitting on it. photo

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Lumiy Lightblade 1500S Series 2

How many times in your working life have you commented on the soul-sucking quality of fluorescent-lit offices? Lighting is crucial to a workspace, not only to keep you from straining your eyes, but to help put you in the right mindset for productivity (or creativity, or whatever the day's work requires), regardless of the weather. The new Lightblade uses advanced tech to adjust the light to your exact preferences—warm yellow or cool white (color temp), dim and moody or blindingly bright (brightness). The base has an integrated USB charging port, and the light is mounted on an omni-directional pivoting head, so you can shine it pretty much anywhere. ($120; lumiy.com)

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HP touchscreen laptop. photo

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HP Spectre x360 (13-inch, 2017)

The small, light (it weighs less than 3 pounds), sleek Spectre x360 is really two devices—a laptop you can work on and send emails from, and a tablet that's perfect for reading, watching, and jotting (it comes with a stylus) down notes and sketches—in one, which makes it a great option for men whose work often takes them on the road. And it does all of this with sharp, rich displays, solid speed performance, an above-average sound system featuring built-in speakers from Bang & Olufsen, and a super long battery life of up to nearly 17 hours. (from $1,150; hp.com)

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Apple Macbook Pro with touchscreen capability. photo

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Apple Macbook Pro with Touch Bar (15-inch, 2017)

As far as Apple products go, the high-end Macbook Pro—which is still the fastest, most powerful laptop on the market—is the cream of the crop. With a sleek aluminum housing, Retina-resolution display, an even skinnier, quieter keyboard with the super handy Touch Bar, 10-hour battery life, and desktop-like power in a portable package, it's the king of laptops, especially for creatives. (from $2,399; apple.com)

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Yellow and black striped notebook. photo

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Rhodia Webnotebook

Whether you're simply sketching out your game plan for the day, or brainstorming a client proposal, there's still something about taking notes the old-fashioned way—by putting pen to paper—that allows for a singular kind of focus, and might even encourage more creative thinking. Skip the Moleskines of your college days, and opt for a Webnotebook. They come in the same standard sizes, shapes, and page types, but are slightly cheaper and boast far superior quality paper that won't bleed ink. (from $14; rhodiapads.com)

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Silver and black pen. photo

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Uni-Ball Jetstream

While there's something to be said for the elegance of writing with a $1,000 Montblanc fountain pen (and the apparent class and seriousness that it communicates), there's even more to be said for an affordable workhorse that writes smoothly, dries quickly and indelibly, and won't bleed or feather. And that, in a nutshell, describes the Jetstream, which is widely available, looks classy with its stainless steel accents and, at eight dollars for a three-pack, won't break your heart should it go missing. ($8/three-pack; amazon.com)

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Black coffeemaker. photo

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Smarter Coffee, 2nd Generation

One of the drawbacks of a home office is that, when you want a little pick-me-up, you have to head down to the kitchen and make your own coffee. With this smart little machine, though, you can brew your perfect cup without even getting up from your work. Using the smartphone app, set your coffee strength, cup size, and even your grind preference, and the Smarter Coffee takes it from there. Minutes later, a fresh cup of caffeine made to your preference awaits, without you having to mess around in the kitchen or make a time-consuming Starbucks run. ($250; smarter.am)

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Sonos One smart technology that will help you do pretty much anything. photo

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Sonos One

Finally, you can afford that office assistant you've always wanted. The new Sonos One is built on the same small-but-mighty platform as the company's PLAY:1 speaker—backed by a pair of Class D amplifiers and custom-built drivers—but has Amazon's Alexa built in for hands-free control of your music and more. Check the news, schedule appointments, brew coffee (yes, really), manage smart devices, or rock out to your favorite tunes, all by simply speaking. Plus, you'll have a cover the next time your partner walks in on you muttering to yourself. ($199; sonos.com)

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