As part of a Work From Home (WFH) mini series, I am taking a look at some gadgets that are helping me stay organized and focused during shelter-in-place. Decluttering my home workspace has been a key to some focused success.

The Twelve South Fermata has helped in this endeavor by giving my headphones a dedicated place to sit and charge! With an aluminum design and genuine leather accents, its a great addition to my WFH spot.

The situation

If you are an avid Let’s Talk iOS fan, in episode 338, Sebastien and Cody had me on to discuss my new WFH lifestyle. Thankfully, I already had a dedicated workspace before the stay home order was initiated, but now that I am spending 50+ hours in front of my home desk, the clutter was starting to bother me each day.

I have a laundry list of gadgets on my desk, because it is now both a blogging station as well as a full work week station. There is: home iMac; work MacBook Pro; external monitor on a stand; desk fan; two keyboards; two mice; one trackpad; multiple device docking stands; iPhone; iPad Pro; AirPods Pro; assorted headphones; lamp; external drive; USB-C hub; and lots of cords.

Thanks to the BackPack (check out my full review), I was able to add a small shelf to the back of my iMac! It has helped by elevating the external drive, the USB-C hub, and all of the corresponding cables. The StayGO USB-C hub helped immensely, check out the full review.

All of this is to say, some of the cables laying around the desk support my Blue Mix-Fi studio headphones, which have a built-in amp requiring a charge. Just another cable laying around and my headphones need a place to be easily accessible for answering video calls and listening to music.

The Fermata

A headphone stand is something I always considered a nice-to-have luxury. And, don’t get me wrong, it is! But, there is form and function in the Fermata that puts up a fight to prove maybe it’s more than a pretty sweet way to show off a pair of headphones. This thing is solid, not just structurally, but also functionally.

I have used other headphone stands and holders, but none of them have compared to the Fermata by way of quality or ingenuity, which is not a word I was expecting to use in this review.

The all-aluminum stand comes in a custom cut foam box. Like something you’d see the bad guys carry their guns in. It assembles with an included screw and the micro USB cable is hidden up the spine of the arm. In the image above, you can see the gray cable sneaking around the post into the headphone. When not being used, it snaps upright into the back of the stand arm. It’s incredibly genius.

Fermata comes with a charging wall block and long 2m cable to ensure you can place the stand anywhere on your desk and have ample cable length. Pair that with another USB A charger, located inside the aluminum base. There is a cable management spindle under the stand as well, allowing you to wrap the other USB charging cable inside, unless needed. Check it out below.

You can see, the cable on the left, is the included charging cable for the stand itself–powering the headphones. On the right, you see another USB A cable, which can be user-installed in the base to give you easy access to charge another device. You can see it in action below charging a headset and iPhone.

Conclusion

It is an elegant solution to an everyday problem. I want my headphones to be nearby for grabbing at a moment’s notice, especially given the number of ad hoc video calls I’m taking right now while working from home. I also want to get all of my messy cables under wraps and ideally hide them or get rid of them where possible. This solves both of those problems. The 10″ post ensures all of my over the ear cans, easily fit on top of the stand without touching the base.

By building the micro USB cable right into the stand, it gets it out of the way. It also holds my headphones on a nice leather arm! Additionally, needing a Lightning cable nearby for my iPhone charging needs, I can hide it in the base of the stand and pop it out when necessary.

An area of critique would be the micro USB cable. It is an “L” shaped connector. This allows the cable to hide away in the spine of the stand, but, it can make connecting it to your headphones a little tricky. You really need an open charging port on your device, instead of a port that is covered by a little flap. Because the “L” shaped connect is angled, it might be difficult to fit.

See above, my pair of Phiaton Chord MS 530 headphones, pointing out this issue. It was able to fit, because the charger port flap is fairly flexible. It would help if the stand came with a USB-C type charger as well. More headphones are upgrading to the new standard.

Overall, the Fermata is a great addition and solves several problems, not just showcases your favorite headphones. I appreciate Twelve South for sending them to me!

The Twelve South Fermata is $49 on Amazon, and it comes in black or silver.