Chances are, you already know the basic rules of creative productivity in the workplace – keep a tidy workspace, and always have the tools you need available. But what gear should you look at to stay as productive as possible?
Designers often rely on a fair few bits of kit to make their day to day lives easier, and this is something we know all about. Having dished out great accessories from leading vendors for over 25 years now, we know exactly how to help creatives do what they do best. We try our wide range of accessories ourselves, so you can rest assured you’re picking up something that’s reliable and beneficial.
Below, we’ve put together our top five recommended accessories that we think will give your creative workflow a boost…
Satechi USB-C Thunderbolt 3 Pro 4K HDMI Hub
As much as we love the latest MacBook Pro models (they’re great for all kinds of design work!), you might find yourself stuck for ports every now and again. That means you’ll have to root around for the right adaptor to make sure you can use all of your essential accessories at once.
Luckily, there’s a way to combine all of those adaptors into one. The Satechi USB-C Thunderbolt 3 Pro is a slimline hub that clips onto the side of your MacBook Pro, utilising its two USB-C ports. In return, it provides you with an HDMI output, two USB 3.0 ports, an SD card slot and a MicroSD card slot. It even has a pass-through power USB-C port, so you can still charge your device while benefiting from all the additional ports. And the hub is even colour matched to your MacBook Pro, in case you’re fussy about that sort of thing.
Our Product Manager, Taylor, says…
“The Satechi hub is a great companion for a designer’s MacBook Pro (it matches!), and ensures you’ll always have access to the ports you need. So no more picking and choosing which devices to use or charge while you’re hard at work in the studio or on the move!”
STM Kings 15 inch / 22L Luxury Laptop Backpack
Out and about and need to do some design work on the go? We reckon the STM Kings Luxury Laptop Backpack will suit you just right. Store your laptop, Wacom tablet, pens, pads, phone, chargers and documents, as well as anything else you might want or need to cart around – the STM Kings backpack can hold it all.
It also comes with a handy CableReady system, allowing you to route a charging cable through the backpack without getting knotted up – especially useful if your battery is running low and you need it fully charged for when you arrive at the studio. It even comes with ‘The Stash’, a small zippered bag that’s really useful for organising your batteries, cables, pens and other bits and bobs.
“You can’t go wrong with an STM Kings laptop backpack. Not only is it easy on the eyes and comfortable to carry, it has enough space and built-in compartments to carry everything a designer could need while on the move.”
Shop now – £99.96 (£119.95 inc VAT)
Belkin Thunderbolt 3 Express Dock HD
Fed up of fighting through a forest of cables in order to get to your desk? Is it becoming a distraction to your creativity? The Belkin Thunderbolt 3 Express Dock is capable of running dual 4K displays, and allows you to connect up to eight (yes, eight!) different devices through a single Thunderbolt connection – perfect for all your charging and accessory needs. Tidy workspace, tidy mind!
“This Belkin Thunderbolt 3 dock is perfect for making sure all your productivity needs are met, without compromising your desk space with loads of wires and cables. Designers will also find the ability to connect dual 4K displays especially useful, providing plenty of screen real estate.”
Shop now – £313.49 (£376.19 inc VAT)
Griffin Notebook Elevator Stand
The Griffin Notebook Elevator Stand not only raises your MacBook up to a more comfortable height (important if you’re going to be staring hard at your screen all day), but it also frees up some desk space so you’ve got more room to create with your Wacom tablet and sketchpad, as well as area for your new dock, headphones and three cups of tea that have all gone cold…
“We’ve got these all over our office – we couldn’t do without them! Not only do they make it easier to look at your laptop screen for long periods of time, but they give you more room to work while at your desk.”
Shop now – £29 (£34.80 inc VAT)
Logitech Slim Combo Case for iPad Pro 10.5″
If you’re using iPad Pro for design work, particularly while you’re on the move, this Slim Combo Case from Logitech is ideal. It’s versatile and multipurpose, and helps transform your iPad Pro experience into something more closely resembling a laptop, so it’s perfect for all the email sending and admin work that’s part and parcel of design workflows. The case’s Smart Connector pairs with and powers the keyboard, and provides four distinct modes: typing, viewing, FaceTime and reading. It also features full-size backlit keys and a built-in Apple Pencil holder.
“iPad Pro is often the tablet of choice for designers, and this Logitech case helps add a dash of productivity to mobile creative workflows by providing a keyboard that can be used to make writing emails, briefs, feedback and more so much easier.”
Shop now – £99 (£118.80 inc VAT)