Generally speaking, the average user can get away with using a normal office chair for a bit of casual gaming. However, when you start to sit down for prolonged periods of time and become a hardcore gamer then that’s when you’ll need to start thinking about investing in a gaming chair. Here at Review Elephant we thought it would be a nice idea to give you an idea of what was on the market and just a few tips to help you decide what gaming chair is best for you.
Please bear in mind that gaming chairs are there specifically for gaming, we do not recommend using them in an office environment simply because they won’t really fit in a professional atmosphere and they are just not designed for that purpose.
- 1 How is a gaming chair different from an office chair?
- 2 How is a PC gaming chair different from a console gaming chair?
- 3 Best Gaming Chairs 2017
- 4 1. Vertagear Racing Series S-Line SL4000
- 5 2. DXRacer Formula Series
- 6 3. X-Rocker Pro Series 2.1
- 7 4. Merax Executive Racing Style Chair
- 8 5. Openwheeler Racing Simulator Chair
- 9 6. X Rocker Fox Wireless 2.1
- 10 7. AKRacing AK-7018
- 11 8. GTR Racing Simulator
- 12 9. Giantex High Back Gaming Chair (Budget Award)
- 13 10. HomCom Racing Style Gaming Chair
How is a gaming chair different from an office chair?
There are a few noticeable differences from the average office chair to standard gaming chairs, here are some of the more noticeable features that you will find in gaming chairs that are not generally found on office chairs:
- Better lumbar support to help aid your back during long gaming sessions
- A headrest so you can sit back in your chair without compromising your gaming position
- Some chairs will even offer the ability to tilt back 180 degrees without you falling flat on your face
- Better armrests to ensure every part of your body is comfortable during a gaming session
Still not convinced in splashing out money on a gaming chair? Just have a quick think about how many hours you honestly spend gaming or sat down at a computer at home and then think if it’s worth spending money to essentially improve your health and ensure you have a better posture for years to come.
Most of you will start to think that you need to actually dig deep in your pocket to get a chair which will last you through some seriously intense and long gaming sessions, this is not necessarily the case as on our top 10 gaming chairs list we do actually have quite a few value for money products that are an absolute steal for the comfort they provide.
How is a PC gaming chair different from a console gaming chair?
Oh yes, there are in fact three types of chairs in this equation, we have the standard office chair, PC gaming chairs and also console gaming chairs. Console gaming chairs actually differ from office chairs a lot more so than PC gaming chairs, this is simply down to the nature of the sitting position for console gamers. They will typically be on the ground or slightly elevated to give you a prime position of looking up at the TV screen you are gaming on.
A great example of a high-end PC gaming chair is the Vertagear Racing Series S-Line SL4000 which features pretty much everything you can put on a PC gaming chair, it has the additional lumbar support in the form of a small pillow, a pillow at the top to rest your head and enhanced armrests to make sure you are comfortable.
Console gaming chairs, on the other hand, will come in one of two designs, the first is the rocker. A rocker-style chair will be completely on the floor with no elevation and will be in the shape of an L, these are purely designed with comfort in mind so if you want to maintain a good posture or have a medical disability that affects mobility then this is not the right type of gaming chair for you. In fact, we generally only recommend this type of chair if you are more of a casual gamer and aren’t looking to spend too much time essentially sat on the floor.
You will find that a lot of console gaming chairs some equipped with the following features:
- Padded headrests
- Padded backs
- Padded arm rests to ensure your elbows don’t get too uncomfortable
High-end rocker style chairs will start to come with some interesting features that you really would not expect to see on a chair, such as:
- RCA inputs
- Vibration support
- Integrated speaker systems with subwoofers
- Wireless receivers
Starting to sound a bit more appealing even without a good posture? The whole point of these rocker style chairs is to not only provide you with a comfortable sitting position but to help immerse you into the game you’re playing. In fact, sometimes the vibration motors can by synced up to a game and provide further depth into the experience.
One of the, if not the, most popular rocker style chairs on the market currently is the X Rocker 51259 Pro H3 which pretty much has all of the aforementioned features but it does come at a fairly high premium price.
Pedestal Style Gaming Chairs
Pedestal style chairs are essentially a rocker style chair that has a small base so it’s not ever fully touching the ground. Generally speaking, the type of gamers who will choose a pedestal chair over a rocker style will be ones who are heavily invested in their driving games as it’s a great sitting position for that type of gaming.
In fact there are actually companies out there who can provide you with certain accessories that will enhance pedestal style chairs just for the sake of racing games, obviously this will greatly increase the price but it’s nice to know that the option is there for racing enthusiasts.
A popular pedestal style chair on the market currently is the X Rocker 51396 Pro Series 2.1 which is almost an identical replica of the rocker style version shown above with just a slightly different look, but enough to give you an idea of what a pedestal style chair can offer you.
As you can see it’s very similar to a rocker style chair bar the fact it has a small base which provides a completely different seating position. Of course, there is one final seating option for gamers and that is the legendary beanbag which is definitely the worst option if you wish to keep a relatively good posture but on the plus side you can get them quite cheap as it doesn’t even have to specifically be made for gaming, any old beanbag will do if needs must.
Best Gaming Chairs 2017
Without further ado let’s get onto our top 10 list and more importantly find a chair that’s right for you.
|1. Vertagear Racing Series S-Line SL4000|
|44 lbs (20kg)||$$$||N|
|2. DXRacer Formula Series||49 lbs (22kg)||$$$||N|
|3. X-Rocker Pro Series 2.1||54 lbs (24kg)||$$||Y|
|4. Merax Executive Racing Style Chair||40 lbs (18kg)||$$||N|
|5. Openwheeler Racing Simulator Chair||62 lbs (28kg)||$$$||N|
|6. X Rocker Fox Wireless 2.1||25 lbs (11kg)||$$||Y|
|7. AKRacing AK-7018||50 lbs (22kg)||$$$||N|
|8. GTR Racing Simulator||38lbs (17kg)||$$$||N|
|9. Giantex High Back Gaming Chair|
|10. HomCom Racing Style Gaming Chair||38 lbs (17kg)||$||N|
Unsurprisingly the Vertagear Racing Series S-Line has reached our number 1 spot on this list down to the fact that it’s the most versatile and performs well in every test that we put it through. We would like to say that it’s been refined for video game players just down to how much comfort they have added across the board.
You will find yourself with the following:
- A comfortable pillow headrest
- Additional lumbar support
- Four different positions that the chair can rest in to provide you with the most versatility
It even takes advice from console chairs in the sense that it actually has a tilt feature which lets you lean forward when things are getting stressful on the battlefield. What’s even better is that you can actually lock the chair in place so you won’t have to rest your body weight on the balls of your feet whilst tilting forwards, just make sure the chair is the only thing tilting during a game.
When paying this sort of money for a chair you would expect it to be ergonomically designed to the absolute maximum and the Vertagear Racing Series does not disappoint. Every inch of your body from the neck, down to the back will be kept comfortable.
Constructing this chair was a piece of cake and only took our team a matter of 10 to 15 minutes, that’s without rushing and having a coffee break throughout the build. This chair is rated to have a maximum load of 330 lbs (150kg) which is actually a little bit more than a lot of gaming chairs we have reviewed in the past.
One of the major concerns that a lot of potential buyers have is how adequate is the chair for tall people, being 6ft 1in myself I had my suspicions prior to testing out this gaming chair. However, I will say I was pleasantly surprised by how tall the back of the chair was, and to be honest it felt incredibly comfortable to sit in regardless of which position I tried, and believe me there were many!
The Vertagear Racing Series S-Line chair has an unbelievable range of colors that in can come in, so many in fact that we are pretty adamant no one can be dissatisfied with the selection on offer.
You can get this chair in the following color combinations:
You might be surprised to see that we’ve included a combination of black and white twice on that list, that’s because the first color of the pair determines the main body color of the chair and then the secondary color is for the highlights you will find on the chair.
While normally you might find that chairs feel the same in terms of build quality the Vertagear definitely feels like it’s well worth the money paid. Everything about it feels sturdy and that it will stand the test of time.
Overall we can find very little to complain about the Vertagear SL4000 and to be honest with a price tag that high we would expect nothing less, but at the same time happy that it has met our expectations and exceeded them.
It was inevitable that a DXRacer chair would enter our top 10 gaming chairs list somewhere.
If you consider yourself to be a hardcore gamer or someone who has a desk job 9-5, 5 days a week then this chair needs to be in your to buy list immediately. Some will call this the king of gaming chairs and they wouldn’t be that wrong.
The DXRacer Formula chair has a whole host of mechanical features that make it exceptionally comfortable and durable for years to come.
The aesthetics of this chair are very pleasing indeed and you can tell that a lot of time and effort has gone into the R&D for this particular product. The chair itself sits comfortably in a metallic steel frame that provides you with a sturdy and secure base to sit on.
To further give you peace of mind about the build quality of this product, it’s actually put through 72 very strict quality-control tests to ensure that it meets the requirements of the manufacturer but more importantly, it meets the requirements that any typical gamer would have.
One of the few downsides to this chair is the armrests which quite frankly are nothing special, they are made from a high-grade dense plastic that is hardy but not the most comfortable we have tested so far. Although it is adjustable, which can be achieved by pressing a button on the side of the armrests and sliding them up and down, we just aren’t overly keen on resting our elbows on it for too long a period of time.
Where this PC gaming chair really starts to shine above competitors is the ergonomic design that just simply works, I honestly can’t describe how comfortable it is when you compare it to a normal office chair.
I was happy to find that the back of the chair can be adjusted to suit your height if you are particularly tall and the integrated hydraulic system also allows you to tilt the chair up to 170 degrees backwards, if you fancy having a very chilled gaming session or just sitting back and watching a movie on your PC.
While having a leather chair can be both a blessing and a curse we are grateful that the DXRacer Formula is made out of a high-quality plastic material that is as comfortable if not more so than leather but also has none of the downsides.
Like many high-end PC chairs it comes with detachable pillows for the headrest and additional lumbar support, these can be attached via a small set of clips.
There are currently two types of DXRacer Formula series chairs, office style and the bucket seat variety, if you choose the office style DXRacer then you will be able to have it in one of the following colors:
*Please note that a secondary color is used for highlighting the chair and the primary color covers the majority of the DXRacer.
We really don’t have much to complain about when it comes to reviewing the DXRacer Formula series as apart from a few very minor points it’s a fantastic gaming chair that will suit every purpose you need it to even if that is for use in an office as well.
As we are talking about the best gaming chairs overall which include ones for console players also, I wanted to make sure that this list was varied with all three major types of chairs. Next on our list is the X-Rocker Vision Pro 2.1 which is a pedestal style chair that has been designed with comfort as the most important factor.
The chair itself is primarily made from leather and a special fabric cover that helps to ensure prolonged gaming sessions don’t turn out to be sweaty. The wireless capabilities of this chair ensures a quick setup and is compatible with the following devices:
- XBOX 360
For the most part, it can pretty much connect to anything that uses Bluetooth and outputs audio, which actually makes it very suitable also for PC gaming if you have the correct setup in place for this type of chair.
The integrated speaker system is a fantastic way to immerse yourself even further, just picture walking through the dense forests of Skyrim with the ambient atmosphere noise surrounding you. As mentioned earlier this chair even offers a vibration function that adds that extra level of depth when playing your favorite video game. We will pre-warn you that the speakers can get quite loud so be careful with your neighbors.
Not only does it immerse you deeper into single player games but when you start going into the world of online multiplayer the speakers come into their own especially when it comes to voice comms from other players which come through crystal clear as opposed to gaming headsets.
One downside to the integrated speaker system is that it is powered by batteries so you will need to buy rechargeable ones as from full charge this chair will only give out roughly 6 hours worth of audio.
Something I noticed is that this chair isn’t really suitable for someone of my height (6ft 1in) and trying to maneuver this beast of a chair can be a challenge in itself as it weighs a whopping 54.2 lbs (24.5kg).
What I’d really like to see is this chair turned into a full on PC gaming chair that has a proper base which can be used at a desk.
Overall it’s a great purchase for anyone looking to get a new console gaming chair, whilst there are obvious areas of improvement it is still an impressive bit of kit that adds a whole lot of fun to any gaming session.
You may start to notice that a large amount of these chairs will start to look the same and that’s very true as there is a generic look which is adopted by a lot of companies for the simple fact that it works well and suits the purpose very well.
Next up on our list is the Merax Executive Racing Style gaming chair, while it does look very similar to the Vertagear chair we can assure you that it isn’t the same but is still a pleasure to use.
The design of this chair is very much like a bucket seat you would find in a racing car, hence the name, and this gives it a unique look that you don’t quite get from a lot of the other PC chairs we have reviewed. It’s also quite an eye-catching chair, so if you want to make a statement then this is definitely the right buy for you.
It also features a lumbar and headrest pillow that are both detachable should you need to, this provides you with an adequate amount of comfort over any conventional office chair.
This chair features a 360-degree swivel that makes it versatile in most situations for maneuvering, the height is also adjustable which is a massive bonus for anyone who is above average height.
The base of the chair is well built and as a whole feels very sturdy, this allows it undergo quite a fair amount of punishment if it needs to.
It’s fairly simple to clean especially in the hard to reach crevices, the foam padding throughout the chair is a welcome addition and makes for a very comfortable sitting experience no matter how long you use it for.
One issue we have with this chair is that we have a hard time actually finding any stock for it as it seems to be sold out in most places. This can be frustrating especially if you need it in a hurry, it’s not usually too difficult to find one or two floating around random online stores but the color selection is often very limited which can be a deal breaker for a lot of gamers that wish to keep to a specific color scheme.
Overall it’s a very solid product that delivers where it needs to and in the right way, the design is something we have come to expect from most gaming chairs but it does have a bit of uniqueness in the racing style design. If you are debating about getting this over the Vertagear then simply ask yourself which one do you prefer the look of as they are in essence very similar chairs.
Now that we’ve listed a few amazing gaming chairs, let’s start to explore some additional products on the market which are not too conventional but cool none the less.
The Openwheeler Racing Simulator Chair is exactly what it says on the tin, a chair that has been designed for gamers who have a passion for racing video games.
While this does essentially provide you with a limited choice of how you can use this chair, if you were really committed to gaming then this could easily double up as a console gaming chair if needs must but we would not suggest using it for PC gaming.
The design is quite simple and resembles a typical bucket seat you would find in a high-end performance car, the build quality is fantastic and the base is incredibly sturdy due to the fact that it’s made out of metal.
Quite simply the best part about this chair is the amount of maneuverability there is when it comes to changing the seating position, you can literally slide it and tilt it to whatever angle you need to be able to play your best.
It also comes in a wide range of colors, such as:
For quite a complex setup, when comparing it to the other chairs on this list, we actually found that the construction time was very short and only took one member of our team a total of 20 minutes to put up the whole chair including the base. Thankfully they also included everything we needed to get the chair up and running, which was a total of two crescent wrenches and two Allen wrenches.
Our only real issue with this chair is the price and because of how specific this setup is and what you get with the chair it comes in at a hefty premium, for enthusiasts it won’t be a dealbreaker but for the casual gamer we imagine it will be.
Overall it’s an absolutely fantastic product for anyone looking to buy themselves a racing chair or perhaps a console gaming chair that has an interesting sitting position. Whatever your use for this chair just know that it will serve you well and because of its build quality is going to be with you for years to come.
Next up on our list of top gaming chairs is the rocker style X Rocker Fox Wireless 2.1 chair.
Comfort is at the forefront of the design and X Rocker do not disappoint, the seating position of this chair makes it incredibly comfortable to use for hours on end.
Even when things start to get a little bit warm the special mesh fabric material helps to regulate your body temperature during an intensive gaming session.
The built-in subwoofers utilize AFM (audio frequency modulation) technology and are similar to the ones found in the X Rocker Pro Series and provide a considerable amount of depth to any game you are playing.
Plus if you aren’t too keen on listening to the in-game sounds then you can simply connect your smartphone and play your favorite music through a popular music app like Spotify.
Bluetooth connectivity allows you to hook this chair up to a wide range of devices including but not limited to:
- Xbox One
- Home theaters
- Nintendo Wii U
- And many more
While this is a rocker style chair we would recommend it for users who are below 210 lbs (95kg) just as a safety precaution.
The backrest is incredibly comfortable and can tilt and swivel into any seating position.
Overall as far as rocker style gaming chairs go it’s one the better models on the market and for the price you pay it’s pretty good value for money.
This is yet another chair that has been specifically designed for PC gaming and you can really see it with the design and how much it resembles a bucket seat seen in high-performance vehicles.
Arguably the most important feature that you will find on this chair is the ability to lock in the seating position no matter how far you are into the tilting mechanism, this helps to prevent you placing any unnecessary stress on your legs.
Like most of the PC gaming chairs we have listed it features a very bold and loud design that comes in a variety of different colors such as:
The metal frame of this chair makes it feel very safe and sturdy under normal operating conditions, the level of build quality means that it will last you for many years to come.
This is yet another chair which has an adjustable back which is very handy especially for gamers who are taller than average, not only that but the backrest also has the capability to be adjusted by up to 180-degrees for complete customization.
You can also adjust the armrests to whichever height you need them to be at, what I’m basically trying to get it is this chair has various customization options that allow you to tailor it to suit your gaming needs.
The metal frame paired with a class 4 gas lift allows this chair to support users who weigh up to 396lbs (179kg), this is considerably more than a lot of chairs out on the market.
To further comfort the AKRacing AK-7018 chair comes with a lumbar pillow and headrest pillow.
Overall it’s an exciting gaming chair that offers a lot of features, some you would expect from a product of this price and others you might be a bit surprised by. The build quality is the real highlight of this chair and assembly is a piece of cake.
Moving swiftly back to racing simulator chairs we find ourself reviewing the ever popular GTR Racing Simulator.
The design of this chair is very similar to that of the Openwheeler and attempts to replicate what it would feel like to be inside a racing car.
Very much like the Openwheeler it has many adjustable features that allow you to pretty much have it in whichever seating position suits you best.
While this is specifically designed to be used for racing games, we did try it out on a few RPG’s and to be honest if you limit this chair to just console gaming and exclude PC gaming then it can be a lot of fun even if it’s not specifically designed for a certain game genre.
The build quality of the GTR Racing Simulator is second to none and it really feels like they’ve put in the time and effort to make sure this gaming chair is going to last the test of time. The chair itself feels incredibly sturdy and is firmly locked in place once you find the right setting for your seating position.
Overall it’s a fantastic racing simulator that provides you with extra depth during gaming sessions. The build quality is what you would expect it to be from a product that has such a premium price.
9. Giantex High Back Gaming Chair (Budget Award)
Finally, we reach our coveted budget gaming chair that has been awarded to the Giantex High Back Gaming Chair which is essentially nothing more than a generic gaming chair that fulfills everything you would need it to but at the same time not breaking the bank.
There are very many comparable features to popular brands such as DXRacer but at a fraction of the total price, it’s almost like a hybrid in between an office chair and a gaming chair.
A high backrest is an absolute essential if you wish to buy a chair for gaming as it allows you to sit in a more comfortable position with adequate support for arguably one of the most important areas to protect during gaming sessions.
This is yet another chair which can accommodate for a large load capacity to the tune of up to 550lbs (249kg) which is considerably more than a lot of other options on this list.
Variety is well known to this particular model as it comes in 7 different colors that include:
- Green (This appears to be more of a lime green)
The height is completely adjustable and will rise from 18.11 (46cm) inches to 21.25 (54cm) inches, although this may not sound like much but it is quite considerable when it can mean the difference between someone being able to use the chair comfortably or not at all.
The tilt functionality allows you to comfortably lay back in style and just relax when you aren’t gaming.
This really is the ideal product for anyone looking to buy a cheap gaming chair for PC.
One potentially problematic downside is that this chair is fairly narrow due to its racer design and might not suit users who have wider than average hips.
Construction is a walk in the park and will take you roughly 15-20 minutes from scratch.
Overall it’s a phenomenal bargain when you consider what you are getting for less than $100 and that’s why it wins our budget award.
Last but not least, the HomCom racing style gaming chair has been created with the casual gamer and office worker lifestyle combined into one.
While it does look very similar to an office chair there are noticeable differences with regards to the design and feel of the chair, it still very much can be used like one.
The durable steel frame of the chair has been rated to hold up to a total of 330lbs (149kg) of load weight.
The gas lift included is adequate for the task at hand and very easily raises and lowers the chair when it needs to be.
While there have been a couple of complaints of certain parts of the chair being difficult to assemble, this is strongly countered by the fact that it is incredibly cheap and a minor inconvenience to a lot of customers does not outweigh the price difference when you compare it to other chairs.
This chair currently comes in 3 different colors which are:
However, these are more the highlight colors as the majority of the chair will be black regardless of what option you choose.
Overall there are really not that many complaints to be said about this chair even when we disregard the price for a moment, this makes it a top contender for our budget award and an ideal purchase for anyone looking to buy a sub $100 gaming chair.
So there you have it, our list of best gaming chairs for 2017, if you have any other thoughts on the matter then please make sure to leave a comment below.
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