Talk Shop Fridays: How Much Is Good Design Worth?

Posted on August 10, 2007 Under Design

A couple of months ago, the Balmuda Design Floater for notebook computers made a rampant run across the design blogs. Undoubtedly, it’s a beautifully designed, functional piece that’s been well thought out. But at $305 for a notebook stand, who’s really in a rush to buy one?

A company called Power Support makes its own cooling stand of similar design, made to hold a notebook upright and out of the way. While it lacks some of the finer touches such as the cable cutouts and the curved edges, it also costs considerably less than Balmuda’s piece, at $40.

Now I appreciate well-designed stuff (yes, that is a technical term) as much as the next guy. I’ll gladly spend a little extra for good design when I can afford to, even if it means saving for a while longer. In this case though, can anyone really justify paying seven times more for the extra thought that went into Balmuda’s piece rather than Power Support’s stand? Where does “good design” shoot itself in the foot by pricing itself beyond the competition? And just how far are you willing to stretch yourself to bring high-end design into your life? Tell us in the comments, because it’s Talk Shop Friday.