The Ergohacks Verdict

The Vector Coffee Cup Holder has a special place on my personal list of gadgets. It was one of the very first that we were able to look at when Ergohacks started and it’s by far the oldest gadget I have still in everyday use and has stood up to the years perfectly. It’s a little metal clip that attaches to the side of your desk and that you put your coffee cup, water bottle or can of drink into. It holds the cup off the desk and away from your expensive laptop, keyboard and other vulnerable items.

The secret behind the Vector is that it lowers the centre of the gravity of the drink below whatever surface it is attached to. This means that even if it does get knocked – and that isn’t impossible – that it falls down onto the floor rather than into whatever is on your desk.

It can handle drinks of up to a diameter of just under 9cm or 3.5 inches at a height of at least 8cm or 3 and a quarter inches. I found that the ideal size cup for it was one that was a fraction of a cm under that. A little searching through my cupboards found an older style Starbucks coffee cup that fits perfectly for me. I initially thought it was being scratched slightly by the hard edges of the Vector but it turned out that it was only a slight transfer of aluminium dust and a good wash of both the Vector and cup fixed the problem. In the years I’ve had the Vector I’ve had a wide variety of drinks in the Vector including coffee cups and mugs, travel mugs, McDonald’s drink cups of large, medium and small sizes, beer bottles of multiple sizes, water bottles of differing sizes and shapes, glasses, and disposable coffee cups. The only thing it hasn’t been able to handle is really wide bottles which just don’t fit.

As a coffee drinker and someone who spends an awful lot of time sitting at a desk, I fall exactly into the original target demographic for the Vector. Its designer was inspired to create it after several of his friends had computers or equipment damaged by their drinks. Once created he realised it wasn’t just for desks. The VectorWorks website shows pictures of people using it in multiple locations clamped on to tables, wheelchairs and in particular in transport. If you think about it on a train or aeroplane the whole area is moving, vibrating and possibly bouncing up and down. Having your coffee be far less likely to drop in your laptop or lap is a big bonus.

In the end, the question is how well does it preserve your keyboard from knocked coffee? I’ve managed to knock drinks out of the Vector twice and both times the drink ended up on the floor, not on my desk – that’s a win. At £34 it’s not a cheap purchase but those two saved keyboards would each have been significantly more expensive. Essential for my desk.


Buy it from Amazon  

Price: ± £35


Size: Folded 13cm x 16cm maximum dimensions
Item Weight: 96g
Colour: Grey metal with black padding on the clamp
Material: Aluminium
Warranty: 90-day warranty

ergonomicBuild quality


The Vector was thought up by Connecticut lawyer Cliff Thier. Thier developed the Vector after several friends damaged laptops in quick succession.

 We based our Ergohacks Verdict on three years of tinkering, testing and using the Vector Coffee Cup Holder provided by VectorWorks. This article was first published on April 2015 and updated 3 September 2017.