Megadesk is an open-source, drop in controller for the IKEA Bekant standing desk
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May 24, 2020
Great product now I have a memory sit/standing desk
Works out of the box. Documentation can be found on the product buy page.
Arrived with a power cable that could be connected to the board and desk.
Love this product and the open source about it.
I’m not that good with a soldering iron. The seller has done a great job, looks clean and solid.
May 2, 2020
[Edit] I was mistaken below, the Megadesk DOES recall stored memory positions after losing power. I can only assume there was some kind of glitch that caused mine to lose its settings. The problem hasn’t recurred. My original review is below, sorry for the incorrect assumption on my part!
This product has made my Bekant desk way more useful. Shipping was quick and the seller is super nice and communicative. My only problem with the product is it appears that if the desk loses power, all memory settings are lost. I shut off the power to my home office to replace a light fixture, and once power was back on, the desk wouldn’t recall any settings – it just played a series of tones after pressing the button the normal number of times. Its easy enough to redo the settings, but was a little disappointing. I still highly recommend this product though as it makes the Bekant desk what it should have been from the factory.
I didn’t have too much trouble opening the factory board enclosure. As others suggested, I (very carefully) tried cutting around the top cover, and then pried it open with a couple of metal spudgers from iFixit. Opened right up with minimal damage.
Response from Greg’s Tinker Town | May 3, 2020
Thanks for the kind words John! Sorry to hear about the memory problems – can you try doing a firmware reset by holding DOWN while powering on the unit? That will wipe the EEPROM. Otherwise, send me a a message if you want to troubleshoot further, I’d be curious why it’s not saving – it does write those positions to EEPROM when saved so it will persist with power off.
April 13, 2020
Shipped to the UK in around 2 weeks which was great.
As others have mentioned, opening the button enclosure is really painful – pretty much destroyed the top of mine (not that it matters, it’s hidden anyway, and it pretty much sits back in it’s place). Here’s some pictures I took of the process: https://imgur.com/a/zSRsihY. Score & cut through a section with a Stanley knife, then use a small screwdriver to get a hole, then a larger screwdriver to “pop” it up – most of it will pop apart, if any is stuck use your knife and screwdriver to pry the other side too.
Other than that, installation was a breeze – just disconnect the old board, connect the new one & the new cable.
I had some initial power-on issues where the board worked (and beeped) and recognised button presses, but the table never moved. Tried power cycling a few times, no difference. Tried the original board… nothing. Disconnected everything, reconnected again and both boards started working. Not sure exactly what happened, but seems fine now.
And it works perfectly. Thanks! 🙂
April 10, 2020
Works exactly as described, perfect!
After a few years the controller board in my Ikea desk died. This replacement board worked perfectly, even better than the original!
Thank you for designing and making this board. It brought my dead desk back to life.
March 26, 2020
Fantastic! Please read along if you are stuck
I have a **lager** BEKANT desk and here goes how I set it up:
0. Prep: I stuck the small gray box rather tight to the bottom of the table (as instructed by IKEA’s manual) and a slot screwdriver pops the cap off directly. The adhesives kept the back-plastic on the table, making it easy to clip things back together when I am done.
1. Use the OEM control module to lower the table to the lowest position (keeping the table at the highest hight ended up with no wiggle room at all for the MegaDesk module. Not sure why.)
2. Swap out the modules and connect the cables. For my BEKANT desk, I ended up connecting to the three-pin-hole at the back. Initially, the OEM control module is connected to the slot in the front, leaving the one at the back for the extension cable beneath the table running from the left to the right.
3. Press the UP button 16 times to toggle the value for “idle status”. There should be a do-ri-me tone that repeats twice.
If you are stuck and need further graphic instructions, please create an issue on the official Github repo and mention my Github username: llinfeng.
Lastly, many thanks to Greg who revived my 4-year-old BEKANT desk!
Feb. 19, 2020
Using it on the largest Bekant. Needed to toggle the firmware support for it and after everything is working as expected. This was a huge improvement to the usability of the desk.
Opening the enclosure was as difficult as described in the other reviews. I didn’t succeed in doing it without minor damage. Maybe some detailed pictures about how to do it would be helpful. Shipping was a bit expensive, too.
Jan. 12, 2020
Great device that should be part of the original desk
I can absolutely recommend this device. It makes it way easier to change between sitting and standing while working at your desk. I can not believe that IKEA did not built something like this for their product.
Shipping to Germany took about 5 weeks.
Dec. 23, 2019
Anyone who owns a Bekant needs this!
This little device is amazing! Just a couple screws and prying off a cover got me functionality that should have existed in this desk to begin with! Took 10 minutes to install and I was off to the races.
Dec. 18, 2019
Awesome! The missing part for IKEA Bekant desks!
Thank you very much for this wonderful piece!
Opening the plastic enclosure of the desk was really, really a huuuge pain. That was only possible with a lot of force. Sure—since it was not intended to be opened by customers. The top of the enclosure (that is not visible when it is mounted underneath the table) has been destroyed during this act. However, the comments of the others were helpful for this.
The controller didn’t work at the first go. I heard the sound when powering the desk but the buttons didn’t work. I played around with toggling the firmware by pushing 16 times UP, removing the controller while the desk has power etc. and finally it works. I could not say what the solution was actually but now it works like a charm! (Small desk from IKEA Germany)
Dec. 7, 2019
Works just like advertised!
Took a lot of prying to get the enclosure open but that’s on IKEA.
When I got it installed it took a while to figure out that I had to change to the Memory 16 thing but after that it works like a charm. Thank you Greg!
He answers questions really quick too so that’s a big plus.
Oct. 18, 2019
Fantastic add-on to Bekant desk
The board arrived quickly, worked immediately, and was easy to install. Cracking open the case on the desk controls itself was a huge pain, but that’s not this board’s fault. Once I got the case open it was very easy to figure out how to hook everything up and the controls worked immediately and respond quickly. Worth every penny.
Sept. 14, 2019
Works as promised
I work from home a lot and this was the only feature of the BEKANT that was missing for me.
Shipping from Canada to Germany took about 12 days.
It was easier than I predicted to open the plastic enclosure. Small advise: if you don’t want the enclosure to have any visible damage after the change, use the area around the screw holes (where you attach the enclosure to the table) to pry the plastic apart.
The change was done in less than 10 minutes and it just works – I’m really happy with the change – this completes my work setup @home.
Thanks to Greg for an awesome piece of Ikea hack 😉
Response from Greg’s Tinker Town | Sept. 16, 2019
Very welcome! Glad you enjoy it! 🙂
Aug. 27, 2019
Why doesn’t Bekant include this in their design?
Installed the Megadesk today. Nice design, easy to use. I expect I will now use my desk much more than in the past. I have five preset heights. Thanks for engineering this nifty hack that Bekant should have included from the start. Be advised: as the instructions state, using a utility knife to score along the seams will help pry the back off the plastic case. I then used a small electronics screwdriver to pry from the corners nearest the front of the case.
Aug. 24, 2019
Great mod for the Bekant table!
When I got myself a Bekant stand-up desk I instantly thought “How can I make it to remember the positions I’m using and recall them without me pressing the button the whole time?”, then stumbled upon some video showing the debugging of the protocol behind that controller (how could I be so naive to think it would be just normal switches closing a circuit…) and fell into despair.
After finding this project I was amazed someone took over the whole development of an alternate controller which does exactly what I was thinking about. It took a good while for all the different postal services to get the controller to Germany but it arrived in one piece.
Getting open the old controller enclosure was quite a challenge (hint: If using force is not the solution, it wasn’t enough force!) and I needed to switch to the alternative mode for the bigger version (looks like they are using that version also on normal sized ones in Germany) but afterwards it works like a charm!
Thank you for creating this! You saved me a lot of headache…
July 9, 2019
Missing link for Ikea sit/stand desk!
This is exactly what I was looking for, and once setup, exceeded my expectations! 5 stars all around.
I bought the unit with a cable. Shipping was very quick (with tracking), follow-up and communication was excellent. As others have said, getting into the grey box was VERY challenging and I finally decided to go for it – and that’s what it took. Also, would help to know what is where inside as you start working on it – that’s what kept me from using a Dremel. However, once I replaced the old board (had to program for Bekant – even the small one) it worked a charm. I’m a little OCD so got a quick response on how to wipe the memory settings (hold the down button while plugging in – erases Bekant setup also) as I didn’t get them “quite” right the first time and now have the perfect sitting and standing positions memorized (2 & 3).
Highly recommended! This completed the Ikea desk for me.
June 11, 2019
Thank you. This provided the missing feature of my desk.
Outstanding product. I purchased the assembled board and cable. The hardest part was getting the back off of the control panel. It took me 10mintues to unscrew the control panel pry off the cover and then install and cable the megadesk board. I have a few colleagues that also use the Bekant Sit/Stand desk and I will be recommending this to them wholeheartedly.
May 2, 2019
Combined it with mechanical switches!
Instead of using the original case, I built my own, with mechanical keyboard switches (I hated the original switches). Now I’m really happy with my desk 🙂
Response from Greg’s Tinker Town | May 2, 2019
WOW! If you can send me any information I can link to, I’ll put it on here or on GitHub! Pictures perhaps?
April 25, 2019
works unbelievably good!
Shipped in one day, worked upon arrival. Hardest part was getting the plastic casing off but it wasn’t impossible. Took my cheap sitting/standing to the next level. Was about to pay $1,000 for a new desk with the same functionality. The issue was that the desk was totally fine, I just wanted memory function. Can’t thank you enough for making these!
March 12, 2019
The opening of the grey plastic enclosure was very difficult. I finally cut open the top cover (hidden below the table when installed) and only then managed to insert a screw driver and pry open the joints around the edge.
The controller didn’t work right away. I had to toggle the firmware by Recalling Memory 16 (pushing down 16 times) twice (back and forth). Now all works fine.
Feb. 19, 2019
Great thing, great guy, 10/10 would recommend.
I did had some issues because the pre-flashed firmware that was bad, but the seller was very nice and helpful and helped me sort it out.
Feb. 18, 2019
Exactly What I Would Have Made Myself
I’ve been wanting a replacement controller for this desk that had presets since I bought it. It was a project that was always on my “[probably never going] to do” list, so I’m glad someone else beat me to it.
I just got this installed ~15 minutes ago. Everything works exactly as described. I got the fully assembled version plus the fully assembled cable. Once I managed to get the plastics open it all went into place very easily. The extra cable was clearly marked with polarity, so that was easy to get right and the ribbon cable could only fit on way. The lid kinda snapped back into place (it’s held against the desk anyway so it’s not going anywhere). I screwed it back on and plugged it in and it just worked.
The “UI” is very intuitive. Although I don’t know that you’re *really* going to want to be pressing the button 10+ times to get higher preset numbers. That doesn’t really affect me since I only need 2, “sitting” and “standing”.
Getting the plastics open was quite a chore. A little bit more direction than “pry it apart” would have been helpful. So, a couple notes: I wasn’t able to pry just at the seam to get it open. If you look at the seller’s pictures, you can see he cut out a notch from the rear side. I ended up cutting a square out of a corner of the top with a hobby knife so the hole would be completely hidden when reassembled. It looks to me like it was sonic welded together along the whole outer seam as well as some of the internal supports, so I don’t think you’ll be able to get it apart without some opening. Luckily it’s not a very strong bond, so you can get the top off as a single piece if you’re careful.
In the end the only slight issue I have is that recalling the presets doesn’t seem to take into account the momentum of the travel. That means that you’ll end up just a bit higher or lower than where you stored the preset. However that’s a trivial thing to work around, you just need to move it a bit lower or higher than where you really want it when you first set your presets. Not really a big deal and totally something that could be fixed in FW.
Response from Greg’s Tinker Town | Feb. 18, 2019
Thanks Patrick! I do have an issue open on GitHub to get the memory a bit more precise based on the deceleration of the desk. I didn’t want to rush this and ship out a bunch of units with buggy code. I’ve been running this code on my desk for 6 months give or take, so I was fairly confident it wouldn’t cause any issues.
I will try to do a video on the disassembly. I broke off a notch so I could fit some debugging cables out of the case when I was reverse engineering the thing. I got tired of it being taped to my desk 🙂