Is a Gaming Chair Worth It? [Beginners Guide]
Gaming chairs are a relatively new trend in the world of PC gaming, but they’re already popping up everywhere. Should you join the rest of the gamers and upgrade to a better seating position?
In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the features that make these chairs stand out from regular office chairs and run through the different features and models available in order to help you decide if one of these chairs is worth your hard earned money.
The Basic Concept:
Before we look at the features and models, let’s get a good understanding of what makes a gaming chair different from an office chair. The concept is very similar to gaming keyboards and mice, which have been around for a lot longer than gaming chairs.
A gaming keyboard and mouse are simply regular keyboards and mice that have been modified with features catering to gamers. In the same way, a gaming chair is simply a regular office chair, but with some modifications to make it more comfortable as well as provide additional functionality.
Some of the most common modifications are things like a more ergonomic seating position, which helps to provide better back support. Gaming chairs also usually have a wider base than your average office chair so they don’t tip over as easily. Some models even include vibration motors or speakers in the backrest of the chair to provide extra feedback during gameplay.
Types of Gaming Chairs
Just like keyboards and mice, gaming chairs come in many different shapes and sizes. There are several different categories of gaming chairs that target specific segments of the market, which include gaming-specific models as well as more mainstream ‘executive’ type office chairs.
These are the most obvious kind of gaming chair, targeting gamers directly with features like ergonomic seating position and speakers in the headrest.
Executive Office Chairs:
Not as obvious as gaming chairs, executive office chairs typically don’t have any game-specific features but are designed with ergonomics in mind. These types of chairs are typically found in offices or at desks that people sit down at all day, so they are built with comfort in mind.
Models & Brands
Now that we have a good understanding of what makes a gaming chair different from an office chair, let’s take a look at the big names in the world of gaming chairs to see which one might be right for you.
The most well known manufacturer of gaming chairs is DXRacer, which has been producing PC gaming peripherals for over ten years. Their chairs are very popular among competitive gamers due to their unique design and focus on ergonomics.
Unfortunately, their chair designs are also quite polarizing. While they are well regarded in the gaming community for having great build quality and good comfort, their unconventional ‘old-school’ design might not be the best fit for everyone.
One of their most popular models is the DXRacer King Series PC Gaming Chair, which uses a similar racing seat style that you’d find in your average sports car. It includes extra features like built-in speakers and a vibrating motor, which can add an extra level of immersion if you’re playing a racing simulator like iRacing or Assetto Corsa.
A slightly more conventional model is the DXRacer Classic Series Big and Tall Chair, which has a similar look to your office chair but with better ergonomic support. The wider base provides better stability, and the headrest is designed to provide good neck support, which prevents your head from getting tired while you’re sitting in front of your PC playing games all day.
The downside to the majority of DXRacer chairs is that they do not come cheap, with prices ranging anywhere between $200 and $600. You also don’t get to choose the color of your chair, as it is chosen randomly upon purchase.
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A relatively new brand to the PC gaming market, Vertagear entered the scene with a focus on providing more comfortable chairs for extended sitting sessions. They have a variety of different models that span across various price ranges, which include features like adjustable headrests and built-in audio speakers.
The most popular model is the Vertagear SL5000, which has a sleek leather design and costs about $550. It includes features like an adjustable headrest, footrests with padding, and built-in sound speakers in the headrest. The added functionality makes it more than just your average gaming chair, making it a good fit for people looking to spend a bit more on something that they can use at their desks all day long.
The downside is that, like DXRacer chairs, the Vertagear line of products doesn’t come cheap. If you’re looking for something with equal parts style and functionality, it might be better to look at one of the more affordable brands on this list.
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Coming from a relatively new company, the Secretlab chairs are designed with one thing in mind: comfort. The focus is on providing a chair that won’t make you feel fatigued even after hours of playing games or working at your desk, which puts them right up against models like the DXRacer King Series.
Their priciest model is the Secretlab Throne Series, which includes all of the bells and whistles that you can expect from a high-end chair. It has built-in front speakers, wireless audio controls, a fully adjustable headrest, and gel infused memory foam to make it one of the most comfortable chairs on the market.
It is currently available for about $630, and considering that it provides a similar level of support and comfort as much more expensive models, we’d say it’s definitely worth checking out.
The downside is that it still doesn’t have the same premium feel as other high-end chairs, but considering that Secretlab has begun to gain more traction in the gaming peripheral market, paired with their attention to customer satisfaction, we expect them to make some improvements on this front.
One of the few companies on this list that focuses exclusively on gaming chairs, Merit claims to have built their entire business around serving the needs of gamers. Their products are designed for extended sitting sessions and come with features like a lumbar cushion and footrests as standard.
Their most popular model is the Merit Series Gamer Chair, which is available for about $330 and features a racing-style bucket seat with an adjustable back and armrests. In addition, it comes with a lumbar support cushion to provide extra lower back support, which is great if you’re known to lean forward while gaming.
Alternatively, if you want something that’s both affordable and includes all of the bells and whistles, their Merit Series Pro Gamer Chair will do the trick. It has a four-point base with adjustable height settings, a headrest pillow, a lumbar support cushion, and even built-in speakers in the headrest.
It’s currently available for about $350, which is what you’d pay for a decent gaming chair from other brands. While you don’t get the same premium feel as more expensive models, it’s a relatively new brand that has shown a lot of potential in its short time on the market.
At the end of the day, what you’re looking for is going to depend on your budget and how much functionality you need out of your chair. If you only need the basics and want to spend as little as possible, it might be better to look at one of the more affordable brands we’ve highlighted in this list.
On the other hand, if you’re looking for a comfortable office chair that also doubles as a decent gaming chair or something that has more features than a budget-oriented product, it’s probably worth spending a bit more cash to get what you need.
There are plenty of options out there when it comes to gaming chairs. Whether you’re someone who spends hours playing games at their desk every day or just looking for something that can help keep them comfortable while they work, we hope that this guide helped you find the perfect chair for your needs.