Home / Gaming / Best gaming chairs we've sat in for 2019 – CNET

Best gaming chairs we've sat in for 2019 – CNET

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Sarah Tew/CNET

A dedicated gaming chair is the one piece of gaming gear you secretly want, but that your partner, spouse or parent would definitely not approve of. But if you’re in the market for the best gaming chair, actually choosing one can be confusing. Many console gaming chairs look the same, and they offer a bewildering array of features (premium PU leather vs. mesh, padded armrests, adjustable backrest, tilt mechanism, chairs with footrests, a bucket seat, and more). And a chair is something you really need the first-hand (well, maybe not hand…) experience with to judge.

The chairs tested here (and most of the ones we researched) share many similarities: adjustable spider bases and 3D/4D armrests that move backward, forward, rotate inward and out, up and down; caster wheels and lumbar support; and padding for ergonomic gaming. All of them would be suitable as an office chair as well. Beyond that, in your search for the best gaming chair, you should look for one that suits your size or has the back and lumbar support you need. Let’s dive in to find the best gaming chair that suits your needs.

The Maingear Forma is functional, flexible and sturdy, and a solid middle-of-the-road choice if you’re looking for a good gaming chair. You can lean back nearly 180 degrees in it and not tip over. It’s also the chair most suited for, let’s say, “big and tall” inactive gamer types. Its ergonomic design and padding support a weight capacity of up to 330 pounds. The chair includes a nice memory foam head pillow and lumbar pillow. In terms of maximum comfort, it came in second place in this roundup after the high-end Secretlab chair. The Forma is covered in faux leather over a steel frame with an aluminum alloy base, so it would work well as an office chair too. The seat height is adjustable from 14.2 to 18.1 inches. 

At least DXRacer was up front in stating this chair is for people under 6 feet and weighing 225 pounds or less. Still, I was able to get my 6-foot, 225-plus-pound frame in it reasonably well. This sturdy chair is covered in a polyurethane faux leather over a metal frame, with a tilt radius of 135 degrees and adjustable armrests. The chair itself weighs approximately 55 pounds and comes with both an adjustable headrest pillow and a lumbar support pillow. The Valkyrie comes in black with four different highlight color options: green, blue, red and yellow.

DXRacer Drifting Series is made for people who weigh 200 pounds or less, so it’s not the best gaming chair for anyone who’s over 6 feet tall or who needs a bit of extra room in their seat. It has height-adjustable lumbar support and a headrest pillow and can be tilted back to 135 degrees, making comfortable reclining easy. Despite the weight limitations, we liked that it took up a little less room and, with its casters, could easily be used as an office chair.

We asked our sample sitters which chair they thought was best overall, and they almost unanimously agreed it was the Secretlab Titan 2020 Series. The Titan has a large backrest with a wide lumbar cushion, and it supports people who are up to 6 foot and 7 inches and weigh 290 pounds. The high-density foam head pillow is generously sized. The internal lumbar support is adjustable, as are the armrests. In fact, the armrests can swivel backward and forward, rotate in and out, up and down, and slide wider and narrower.

Secretlab is also planning special edition models, currently available for preorder. They range from the Batman to Game of Thrones themes (maybe not what you would want for an office chair, but who’s judging?) and add $30 to the price.


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