Tech

Nerdytec Couchmaster Cycon 2 review: A gaming command center for your couch


Be the gaming master of your couch.


Josh Goldman/CNET

I game with a controller when I’m on my couch, and a keyboard and mouse when I’m gaming at my desk. I definitely prefer the latter to the former, though, and usually, I do it sitting on the edge of my couch hunched over the keyboard and mouse on my coffee table. It’s not ideal, but it works. The three-piece Couchmaster Cycon 2 from Nerdytec is a better option, and while it’s big and somewhat expensive, it gives you room to sit back, spread out and comfortably game for hours.

The $179 Cycon 2 (£146, AU$239) is like a giant lap desk, but it sits on top of two foam cushions covered in a smooth microfiber. The desk piece measures 2.7 feet (82 cm) long and 13 inches (33 cm) deep. It’s just enough to give you room to mouse with a full-size keyboard. However, I recommend going with a TKL-size keyboard or smaller, because it felt a little clumsy with a larger keyboard. 

Sitting down between the cushions and getting strapped in, so to speak, is a bit awkward, too. Nerdytec does include some Velcro strips you can attach to your keyboard or a controller to keep them in place while you get into position and on the front of the right cushion there’s a pocket for your mouse. Once the desk is in place though you can just sit back and relax, and the microfiber is enough to keep it from sliding around.  

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There’s a four-port USB hub for your peripherals in the desk.


Josh Goldman/CNET

The desk has six USB 3.0 ports: two on top and four inside. Simply pop off the magnetically attached panels on the bottom of the desk and connect your keyboard and mouse to the internal USB ports. There are cable pass-throughs on the top and sides, and cable-management posts inside to keep your cords from getting tangled up. 

A single, specially designed cable connects the Couchmaster to your PC (or console) and an included optional power supply. The extra power lets you charge your phone or other devices with one of the two top-mounted USB ports. 

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You can use the internal hub for a wired keyboard or mouse, or run a cable for a wireless dongle to the top of the desk.


Josh Goldman/CNET

The left cushion has a couple of pockets on the outside so you can keep your phone or TV remote handy or stash other accessories. Nerdytec also sells phone and tablet mounts for the desk, an ashtray and a mousepad that runs the entire length of the desk. There’s no headset mount or hook, though, which seems like a miss.

The memory foam cushions give you a comfortable place to rest your arms while your gaming. And when I wasn’t using them, my kids clubbed each other with them, which brings me to my last point. All three pieces are big, so if the Cycon 2 isn’t going to live on your couch or you don’t have a dedicated gaming space (I don’t), you’ll need some space to store them out of the way. 

While the Couchmaster Cycon 2 might not be a necessity, the design and features all add up to a great gaming experience for anyone who’d rather go into battle with a keyboard and mouse than a controller, or who wants a comfortable way to swap between the two. Bonus: The Cycon 2 can also be used as a laptop desk for your couch when you’re not gaming.



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