The Best Chair for Gamers

Here at 9 to 5 ergonomics, we’ve written a lot about office and executive chairs.  In fact, we have a guide specifically outlining the best ergonomic chairs on the market.  We’ve also looked at the value segment in our guide to the best ergonomic chair under 200.  We haven’t, however, spent a lot of time looking at other niche chair markets.  Today, we’re doing a run down of the best chairs for gamers.

This guide will go over some of the most important things to consider when purchasing a gaming chair.  Or, if you prefer to cut to the chase, click here to see our #1 pick on Amazon.com.

Top 3 Best Chairs for Gamers 2016:

Key Factors to Consider When Buying an Chair for Gaming:

When considering the purchase of a gaming chair, it is tempting to merely apply the same criteria one might use when purchasing an office chair.  Some of the same criteria are worth considering, but nowadays, there are a number of bells and whistles specifically geared towards hardcore gamers that can really make a difference in your gaming experience.

Ergonomics

It comes as no surprise that the ergonomics of a gaming chair is the first thing that I consider in a chair.  In some ways, I look for the same features I would look for in an office chair: adequate lumbar support, comfortable seat cushioning and a reasonably molded design.

However, the movement patterns in the office are very different from the movement patters involved in gaming.  In particular, it is not nearly as important to be able to work in a “lean forward” sort of position.  Therefore, you might consider how the chair reclines when evaluating whether a chair is ergonomically suitable.  Many gaming chairs offer adjustable tilt and back support.

As with an office chair, the usefulness of arm wrests on a gaming chair is debatable.  If you do purchase a chair with arm wrests, make sure that they are adjustable for situations where you do not want to have them in the way.

Finally, many gaming chairs are designed to be used in a relined position close to the floor, similar to the way that one might sit in a low slung sports car.  There is nothing wrong with these chairs, but it is worth considering whether this is your preferred position, or whether your gaming activities are more suited to a traditional chair.

Firmness

Whereas firm support is almost always desirable in an office chair, it’s not always the case that we want a firm gaming chair.  Yes, it is always important to properly support your back.  However, while reclined, the chair will naturally provide a reasonable amount of back support, and therefore you might consider purchasing a chair that is softer, which may be more comfortable.

Speakers

Many gaming chairs now come with built in speakers.  Some chairs even feature wireless capabilities, allowing you to fully immerse yourself in the gaming experience without the hassle of plugging in wires.  These chairs bring you closer to the action of your games, but can also be unnecessary if you already have a sufficient stereo system attached to your gaming platform of choice.  Since many console gamers already have immersive home stereos, built in speakers may be an unnecessary expense.

Adjustability

Though there is a bit more wiggle room when it comes to gaming chairs, it is still nice to be able to dial in exactly the angles that you prefer.  Look for a gaming chair with adjustable tilt and back support.  Some gaming chairs also offer volume controls for the built in speakers and other nice perks.

Our Favorite Chairs for Gamers:

1. X Rocker 51396 Pro Series Pedestal 2.1 Gaming Chair


 Pros:
  • Setup – The X Rocker is easy to get set up and going without much fuss
  • Back Support – The X Rocker provides quite a bit of back support.
  • Appearance – Sleek, modern appearance with racecar like textured backing.
  • Built in Speakers – Clear, bluetooth sound
  • Vibration Functionality – Immersive vibration feature

Cons:

  • Recline – Recline is somewhat more limited than might be expected from a chair at this price point.
  • Arm Wrests  – Arm wrests not of particularly high quality (but you didn’t want those anyway, right?)

2. DXRacer Formula Series Bucket Chair

Pros:
  • Build Quality – The DXRacer is made from incredibly high quality materials that will last a lifetime.
  • Back Support – Ergonomic back support, similar to that found on the Aeron and other high quality office chairs.
  • Appearance – Looks like a racing char, great for the Gran Turismo crowd.
  • Neck Support – Chair is tall enough and ergonomically designed to provide neck and head support as well.
  • Recline – Provides sufficient recline for gaming.

Cons:

  • Arm Wrests  – Arm wrests leave a lot to be desired, hard and flimsy.
  • No Built In Speakers – Lacks built in speakers

X Rocker 5172601 Surge Bluetooth 2.1 Sound Gaming Chair

Pros:
  • Built in Speakers – Clear, bluetooth sound
  • Back Support – Sufficient back support
  • Affordability – A good value, reasonably priced compared to other top gaming chairs.

Cons:

  • Padding Quality  – Padding wears out quickly.
  • Heavy – Difficult to move around

Conclusion

The value of a gaming chair is in the eye of the beholder.  Many folks will likely prefer to just game on their couch.  However, if you are a hardcore gamer like I am, it might be worth purchasing a dedicated gaming chair.  You can’t go wrong with any of the chairs on our list today.  Happy Gaming!

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