Ideas + Inspiration

How to Choose the Best Modern Lamp for Your Workspace

A desk lamp is an integral part of any workspace set up. A desk is never complete without one, so when it comes to buying the right light, it’s best to know the ins and outs of modern desk lamps so you can choose the right one for you. Here’s how to choose the best lamp for your workspace:

The Purpose of A Desk Lamp

slim, modern led desk lamp.
Pixo Plus Table Lamp from Pablo Designs

Having a lamp on your desk is more than just for show, even if the space in your home office is mostly for the show itself. A desk lamp helps to provide task lighting to illuminate the task at hand. Whether the task is typing away on the keyboard or reading the fine print, you want to be able to see comfortably and clearly. That’s where a desk lamp comes in.

Where Desk Lamps Thrive

modern, purple led task lighting.

But modern desk lamps can be used for more than one purpose, like acting as another layer in a room’s overall lighting scheme. And with the amount of beautifully designed desk lamps to choose from, the once boring lamp can make quite the bold statement all on its own. Since modern desk lamps nowadays are multi-functional, you’ll need to consider what purpose your lamp will be providing.

Task Lighting Checklist

full adjustable articulated arm and body clip on desk lamp.
Tolomeo Table Lamp with Shade from Artemide

Task lighting from desk lamps will help give you more control over the amount of light and its direction, which is ideal for reading and using a computer. If your desk lamp is going to serve as your main source of task lighting, here are few things to consider:

Lamp Size

Classic, type 75 desk lamp
Type 75 Desk Lamp – Paul Smith Edition from Anglepoise

Consider your workspace, taking into account the size of your desk and the type of work that takes place there. Bigger desks, like drafting tables where you have a larger area that needs to be illuminated, need taller desk lamps with a long arm that can reach across the length of your desk. Sometimes, the best option will be rearranging your desk so your lamp can illuminate your work area fully.

Amount of Light

slim, colorful gen 3 led desk lamps.
Z-Bar Mini Gen 3 Desk Lamp from Koncept

Eye strain is no joke, and the right type of lighting will help combat this. But try as you might, our eyesight ages with us and you’ll need more light as you get older. Older eyes are also more sensitive to glare, so find a lamp with a more directional beam. An LED light is great for task lighting. Not only does it consume less energy and lasts longer, but LEDs have a direct beam. Just be sure to get a lamp that is at least 5-10 watts, which is great for a home office and adult usage.

Light Position

clip on spotlight type desk lamp.
Tolomeo Clip Spot Light from Artemide

Your desk lamp should be positioned above your head with the beam directed away from your eyes. A desk lamp that can be angled and manipulated will give you the flexibility you need to angle and position the light comfortably. You can even add in additional lights, like wall or clip lights, to help brighten up your workspace too.

Lamp Style and Design to Suit Your Space

Classic, modern table lamp.
Beat Table Lamp from Tom Dixon

Choosing the style of lamp and design will come down to personal preference. Gladly, you can get the best of both worlds, with stylish task lighting that can match your decor, while functioning as more than just a desk lamp, like with the Mod 548 Table Lamp. Other lamps, like the Tom Dixon Beat Table Lamp combine the functionality of a traditional desk lamp with a stylish twist.


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