We’ve highlighted some great laptop stands in the past, but if you’re looking for a stand that allows you to sit or stand while you work, is strong enough to hold your laptop, and portable enough to take with you anywhere you go, the Roost is the perfect stand for you.
The Roost is a portable laptop stand, small enough to fold up and slide into its included carrying bag, but sturdy enough to hold a Macbook Pro firmly on your desk while you type directly on it, or while you sit and use an external keyboard and mouse. That’s on purpose though—it’s made of carbon fiber and high impact plastic (the kind used in ski bindings, for example), along with ceramic paint and metal fasteners. It’s lightweight, but it can take a beating. Check out this video of a load test to see how strong it is.
Using the Roost is simple—just pull the sides apart until the sliding mechanisms lock into place, put it on your desk, and nestle your laptop on top of it. The video above shows you how it’s done. The key is getting the upper flaps neatly in the space between the screen and the chassis of the laptop. Once in place, your laptop isn’t moving. You can wiggle it around your desk all you like—it takes serious force to get it to budge, and even though it might look precarious, it won’t slide forward either.
That said, the Roost isn’t perfect. It only supports clamshell-style laptops, specifically the Macbook Pro and Macbook Air, which have the unique hinge design that the Roost was built to take advantage of. If you have a laptop with a similar design, it still might work for you, though. Also, using the Roost means you can’t close your laptop lid. All of its documentation warns you not to do this, and if you try—like I did, your laptop slides right off.
Still, we can’t ding the Roost too much for those issues. It’s designed to be a portable laptop stand—one you fold up when you’re not working. The fact that it’s small and light when collapsed (1″ x 1.5″ x 13″/2.5cm x 3.8cm x 33cm, at 6.5oz/183g) means you can essentially take your stand—or your standing desk—anywhere you go. If you’re interested, it’ll set you back $75 direct. It’s admittedly pricey, but if the flexibility to stand or sit and the portability appeal to you, it’s worth checking out.