Oh, you poor dear – having to struggle to find a desk chair. Before you freak faces roast me for my struggle in buying a $600 chair, let me just say I GET IT. That aside, buying a desk chair is hard. In fact, it’s one of the harder things I’ve had to buy lately. Usually, if I’m buying something it’s easy to research and pick the best thing for my budget. But Desk Chairs somehow escape that simplicity. Finding quality reviews on desk chairs is a bit like trying to find reviews on different types of screws.
I went into the search like a potential home buyer in Toronto. I have a budget and am hoping for something great. But then you realize that your budget won’t get you anything nice… Let me give you some real world examples. I originally thought a $300 budget would be plenty but quickly realized I was going to get something uncomfortable in the long run. I spend at least 8 hours a day in a desk chair, and the only other thing I try to spend 8 hours in is my bed, and that was $1000. So if I rationalize it that way, perhaps I can spend $600 on a desk chair. Let’s now look at all the chairs I’m considering.
My Desk Chair Wishlist
- Ergonomic Design/Support for my Lower Back. I have scoliosis, so I’m prone to the occasional low back spasm – supporting it is important.
- Good Position Control – I don’t need to be able to lie down in it, but moving the back, adjusting the seat position and raising the chair up are ideal.
- Quality Construction – If I’m going to pay $600 for a chair, I want it to last me for 5 years+.
- Comfortable – The current chair I’m in has been so compressed from years of use, I can literally feel the bolts that connect it. It needs to be nice to sit in for many hours at a time.
- High Back – I currently have a mid-back chair, and while it is okay, I’d like something to support my neck too.
- Looks Nice – This is certainly more optional, but if I can find a nice black/white chair I will be very happy.
- Good Reviews – I don’t want to make a mistake, so I want to see people have said good things about the chair MONTHS/YEARS after buying it.
After weeks of looking, I’ve somewhat narrowed down the list to my TOP FIVE possible desk chairs. It seems there’s a common theme – when you enter the mid-to-high range price point ‘racing’ or gaming chairs start to become popular.
Used Herman Miller Aeron Chair ($600)
These things look odd but the reviews seem to be incredibly comfortable. New, these things start at $1000 Canadian, so the only way I’m getting my ass in one is if I take someone’s pre-fart filled chair. Wonderful imagery there. These do have attachable headrests, so that resolves my neck complaint. The problem is it’s still expensive for something that’s used. Amazon has used ones on for $650.
Corliving Mesh Manager Chair ($580 Sale)
This chair is usually around $800, but saw it on sale recently and it seems to meet my desires. But I can’t pull the trigger because I’ve found no reviews on it. I also can’t try it out in store because it’s an online order only thing. Ugh.
Bucket seat style seems popular in this price range. And the three below are all well reviewed – but which one do I pick? Why pick one over the other? There’s no clear sign. This one has racing strips – do I want racing strips? With Amazon, I know I can potentially return it if I don’t like it – but shipping time is 1-2 months?
Vertagear SL4000 Gaming Chair ($445)
This one is a more flat design, and it’s a little wider but the arm rests are more straight vs the curve of the AKRacing and DXRacer style ones. I do like the design on this one a bit better than the AKRacing though. But Amazon has shipping times in the 1-4 months?!
DXRacer Drifting Series Gaming Chair ($530)
This is the ‘gold standard’ in gaming chairs. Every gamer has one it seems. But is that because they did a massive campaign to give them out to everyone – or are they better than their seemingly exact competitors? Does paying more mean it’s better? Reviews seem to put all these chairs on the same footing.
So, as you can see – a bit of a predicament. I like the $450 price range, and the style is totally fine. But there’s NO clear winner on any of these chairs. What’s worse is that MOST of them have no physical location anywhere in Toronto. I’ve sat in a DXRacer and liked it, but where can I try the others? How do you buy a $500+ chair without ever sitting in it? Bleh… buying a desk chair is hard!