Hello, and welcome to the best gaming chair 2017 mega guide. In this in-depth guide, I will go over the best gaming chairs in 2017 depending on your needs.
Last updated 1/28/2017
In many ways, choosing the best gaming chair a subjective thing since there are so many different body types and preferences. However, I’ve tested a ton of chairs and read a lot about what people want, so I can help you turn an uninformed opinion into an informed one so you don’t have as much trial and error as I have.
It doesn’t matter if you are tall, short, skinny, or overweight–or even just frugal, this guide has compiled the best gaming chairs around! I’ve put a TON of work into this guide and it features chairs like DXRacer, cheap budget chairs, and even high-end ergonomic chairs from brands like Steelcase and Herman Miller.
Here’s a custom quiz I built to help you decide which DXRacer you want (if you even want one, I do go over cheap and expensive ergonomic options for gaming chairs here). Read more later on in the pricing table that outlines every DXRacer chair and specifications.
My Story with Gaming Chairs
I’m a gamer like you who has played way too much World of Warcraft and League of Legends. Coupled with a full-time desk job, my back knows the pain of sitting way too long. When I was younger, it didn’t matter what chair I used, but now I’ve experienced more back pain as I’ve gotten older.
Throughout my time gaming in my twenties, I knew that my chair was an important factor, but I didn’t know how important. I’ve had hip pain, lower back pain, neck pain–you name it. It’s a combination of a love for gaming, but it’s also a result of spending time working on a computer without a proper chair. Now that I’ve gotten one of the most expensive chairs around, a lot of my pain is gone! However, make no mistake, my journey with gaming and office chairs has been one of wasted money, trials, and tribulations. It goes something like this:
My Chair Journey:
Chair #1 Cheap office chair from Staples that my parents bought (that eventually started cracking and breaking when I took it to college). At one point my dad put tape on the sides which made the arm rests feel perpetually sticky for the rest of the time I used it.
Chair #2 More Expensive office chair from staples (that I gave to a family friend since it’s armrests couldn’t be adjusted and the shape was bad).
Chair #3 Bought a cheap task chair off Amazon thinking no arm rests and simplicity would be better, it hurt my back like a mother fucker.
Chair #4 Drove 3 hours to buy a used Herman Miller Aeron that smelled like ass so I had to clean it and make it feel as new as possible. Lumbar support felt like a brick, and chair wasn’t comfortable to sit in for the $300 used price (felt like a lot at the time).
Chair #5 Decided expensive didn’t mean better, so I bought an Ikea Markus chair after seeing so many glowing recommendations online for tall guys. Lumbar support was dookie again, and couldn’t be easily adjusted, so I took it out, but the chairs seat was too hard and I felt like the chair wasn’t actually made for tall guys.
Chair #6 Drove 2 hours to find a used Steelcase Leap V1. This was the first chair I liked in a long time, and I used it for two years before wanting something newer–sometimes the chair would cause my hips to be sore after sitting 8+ hours–go figure. Best back support and fit I’ve EVER had.
Chair #7 After using a Steelcase Leap for awhile, I decided I loved the brand and goal of the company, and wanted to check out a brand new chair this time so I went for the Steelcase Gesture. I thought a chair that was more newly designed would be even BETTER. Suffice to say, this was a HUGE mistake (as seen in this review).
Chair #8 Decided to go after a “new” chair from Autonomous since I love their standing desk, but after a sketchy Kickstarter campaign I got wet feet and canceled my order. I decided to experiment with DXRacer chair to get more of a “luxury” seating experience than my Steelcase (I liked the idea of a more reclining chair, bigger back, etc).
Chair #9 Got the Sentinel DXRacer and was super impressed by build quality, the look and style of the chair, and overall comfort, but found that the side ridges of the chair didn’t feel ergonomic to me since I don’t like to use armrests.
The lumbar support pillow was also “too much” and hit me too hard in the back. I also felt movement in the chair was restricting after using my Steelcase Leap. Overall, I was sad to return my DXRacer since I did like the chair, and if I were to order a DXRacer again, I would order something from them without as much ridges like this.
Chair #10 Right now I’m sitting in my original Steelcase Leap, and I still love it. In a lot of ways, I regret trying to “cheat” on the chair since I did have some faults with it. (fabric is scratchy, cushions are worn down due to age, etc). I do want an upgrade soon and right now I’m kicking for the more improved Steelcase Leap V2.
Chair #11? I got a free high-end ergo chair from a friend. It’s a lesser known brand, but so far the experience is very good, as seen here in my review of the Office Master IU79HD 24-Seven. The chair has very good cushioning, durability, and adjustments, but I still find myself missing the intuitive adjustments from Steelcase’s brand. Steelcase chairs just have great quality and I love how smooth everything is on the chair (from the wheels, adjustments, and the recline ability).
The other day I was testing out a “Steelcase Think” and really found myself liking the minimalist design of the chair as well as the unique scroll wheel adjustment on the side of the chair that lets you adjust the pressure of your back and tilt of the chair.
The IU79HD Chair chair requires me to lock the position and the “free” position that lets me sit forward or recline feels a bit too restrained (after a time it’s gets annoying not being able to lean back like I can in my Steelcase Leap) since the pressure can’t be controlled as well and there is more liberty to tilt forward (this can be good for intense work, however).
So why not just go to Walmart, Target, or a big box store like Office Depot to get a chair? After all, stores like Office Depot or Ikea thrive on people just coming in and plopping a hundred dollars on a poorly made chair. These chairs are OK for most people, but NOT for serious gamers. They lack back support, comfy armrests, tilt features, materials that will last, and just plain comfort.
It could just be that after working an 8-hour shift in a chair at work, you want something more comfortable at home. Or maybe, you are the type of gamer who binges on weekends spending 8+ hours a day climbing the ladder in MOBAs. Perhaps you saw your favorite streamer rocking out a cool gamer chair and you want one similar.
Whatever the case, $50-100 office depot chairs don’t make the cut. So without further ado, here is the best gaming chair 2017 guide!
If you want a more “office oriented office chair” take this quiz here. If you want a DXRacer and want to find the one you want, keep reading!
Best Gaming Chair 2017
Table of Contents:
#1 What makes a good gaming chair?
#2 What is the best low-priced gaming chair in 2017?
#3 What is the best mid-priced gaming chair in 2017?
#4 What is the best ergonomic gaming chair in 2017?
#5 Editors Choice for Best Gaming Chair 2017?
What Makes a Good Gaming Chair in 2017?
The most basic office chairs have one control option. You can usually always make your chair go lower or higher–but that’s it. For more advanced gaming chairs you can customize the tilt of the back, the arms, and even adjust pillows to stay comfy. Then, in even more expensive chairs like the Steelcase Leap or Herman Miller Embody, you can adjust other things besides seat height and arms like back tension (how hard the back feels or how tightly the lumbar support feels), seat depth (how far your seat hits into your legs), and lumbar height (where the lumbar support touches your back). The more customizable a chair is, the more likely you will find the “perfect fit.”
Do you want mesh or stylish leather? Or do you just want a simple sort of fabric? This is something you need to think about since most fabrics have their advantages. Leather can get hot, but it can feel very comfortable, while mesh material is very breathable but might feel tight or sag after extended use. It also depends on the quality of the material that you are buying, and you will find more expensive chairs have more durable and comfortable build materials.
Do you want something that is minimalist, or something that stands out like a DXRacer chair? Most cheap chairs are pretty minimalist, but some of the most expensive chairs will fit into any office and look incredibly modern and sleek. But if you’re a gamer, in a lot of ways, DXRacer’s brand has come to symbolize competitive gaming since it’s used at so many events and streamers.
#2 What is the best low-priced gaming chair in 2017($50-100)?
If you’re on a budget but need a new chair to last you a few years, you might fall in the budget gaming chair category. While these chairs can be comfortable, I would not recommend them for 8+ hour gaming sessions or expect them to be super comfortable. They are good for the occasional gaming session, and once you stand up, you might feel a bit stiff.
These are all office chairs with ergonomic features that work great for gaming, but I’ve also created a new resource here which details the best budget gaming chairs.
Chairs in the $100 or sub $100 range have limited features to adjust, so you might find that you can’t ever get the “perfect fit” that you like. These are the types of chairs most commonly found in low-paying office jobs or casual offices.
My recommended chair for this category is going to be the Offex HL-0001 Chair. For this $100 price tag, the chair has a decent amount of controls that make it stand out like adjustable arm height, back angle adjustment/tilt, as well as the seat depth. It’s got good reviews on Amazon, and the back support is very adequate for the price.
If you want an even cheaper chair with fewer adjustments but with more of a traditional executive chair look, take a look at the High-Back Office Chair from Amazon. In addition, you can also find a cheaper “version” of the Offex chair, the Mid-Back Mesh Chair sold by Amazon, with much fewer adjustments but at a lower price.
I would recommend going with the Offex Chair, however, since it has enough features that it will still be a good chair for the price, while the other chairs might not be as adjustable as comfortable but they are cheaper.
#3 What is the best mid-priced gaming chair in 2017 ($250+)?
DXRacer Best Gaming Chair 2017 Chair Guide
The DXRacer chairs are popular in the gaming community–and for a good reason. In 2017, we are starting to see a lot of knockoffs of DXRacer chairs with lackluster quality.
However, for the best gaming chairs of 2017 I won’t be mentioning any knockoffs even if they are cheaper, since they lack DXRacer chair’s build quality, features, and comfort.
I have DXRacer chairs as an option for the mid-price option in 2017. The entry level models are very suitable for most people and range from $250 to $400 which is a good price for an excellent gaming chair. Some of the bigger models for bigger people can be more expensive but are worth the price of the extra size and comfort.
One thing to understand about DXRacer as a company is that they have released so many chairs and model types with different variations that it has become a bit of a mess. To be honest, I think they should change their approach since sometimes less is better. But I’ve made it relatively easy for you to decide which one to get which a VERY useful chart. I encourage you to share this article with people looking for the best gaming chair in 2017 if only for this DXRacer chart I have spent hours on.
If you want a DXRacer without any sort of ridges, I would check out something like the DXRacer Boss Series.
DXRacer chairs are super comfortable since you can lean far back, they come with pillows, headrests, and the variation in size alone means that you will get a perfect fit to your body. They also look incredibly cool, and it’s a perfect accessory to the start of your streaming career! One of my favorite reasons I like the chairs is that they feel more “comfy” than even some high-end ergonomic chairs. They always have head rests, and you can practically sleep in them.
DXRacer started out as a company designing race car seats, and now they hold a commanding place in the market. They are designed for work as well as play and are perfect for a more traditionally comfortable gaming or work session.
The wide variety in sizing and styling also makes choosing the best DXRacer chair a bit of a challenge, so we’ve found handy infographic to help show you which chair is best for you.
Your height and weight are the main determining factors. But the cheaper models also lack some more advanced features like adjustable arms or premium build materials. I will list out the chairs regarding increasing weight and height limit in this table:
|Best Gaming Chair 2017||Drifting Series||Elite Series||Origin Series||Formula Series||Classic Series||Wide Series||Racing Series||Iron Series||King Series||Sentinel Series||Boss Series||Tank Series|
|Weight Limit||170 LB||180 LB||200 LB||200 LB||225 LB||185 LB||250 LB||250 LB||300 LB||350 LB||425 LB||450 LB|
|Adjustable Arm Type||3D||3D||Not adjustable||3D||3D||3D||3D, 4D||3D, 4D||4D||3D, 4D||3D, 4D||4D|
|Type of Material||Polyurethane||Leather style vinyl, PU||Fabric||Fabric, PU, Carbon Look Vinyl (PVC)||Leather Style Vinyl||Polyurethane||Fabric, Carbon Look Vinyl (PVC)||Leather Style Vinyl, Full Grain Leather (IS188 models only)||Leather Style Vinyl, Carbon Look Vinyl, Strong Mesh, PU||Carbon Look Vinyl (PVC), Strong Mesh, Leather Style Vinyl, PU||Leather Style Vinyl||Polyurethane|
|Buy Now||See on Amazon||See on Amazon||See on Amazon||See on Amazon||See on Amazon||See on Amazon||See on Amazon||See on Amazon||See on Amazon||See on Amazon||See on Amazon||See on Amazon|
A few things to also consider when deciding which DXRacer to get:
Differences between DXRacer Armrests:
There are some differences between the chairs and the armrests. There are three kinds of adjustable arms: adjustable, 3D adjustable, and 4D adjustable. We included these in the table, but here’s a small explanation on what each term means.
- Adjustable can go up or down (Available on the D and F series).
- 3D can go up and down and forward and back (Available on the B, C, D, F, I, R, S and W series.)
- 4D can go up and down, side to side, AND forward and back. (Available on the B, I, K, R, S, and T series).
Differences between Bases:
Adjustable arms are pretty important, and you want to make sure you get the right model with the right type of arms–however, the base–not so much. Most of them function the same, but in the more expensive models, you will find aluminum bases instead of nylon. Aluminum is more shiny (black and silver), and it can support more weight than Nylon.
Differences between Headrests:
One other thing to note about the DXRacer chairs is that the R Series and the W series have a different pillow than the other series. Some the R series and W series have a different shaped pillow, but this isn’t a HUGE thing to consider since both pillows are fine.
Differences between Materials:
DXRacers come in a variety of fabrics, and different models have separate types, or the option to get what type you want.
- Some DXRacers use polyurethane, which looks and feels like leather but isn’t. It’s waterproof and easy to clean.
- The more expensive DXRacers use real leather style and chrome style vinyl which is more durable than polyurethane.
- The cheapest DXRacers use fabric which can be clawed easier, isn’t waterproof, and cheaper. But it does stay room temp.
This is CRAZY Confusing! Which DXRacer is the best gaming chair in 2017?
Giving someone a DXRacer chair recommendation could almost be considered an hourly therapy cost, so I can’t blame you–so I can try to simplify it for you.
If you are short and want a cheap chair, get the DXRacer Origin Series Chair.
If you are BIG and tall get the Tank Series Chair.
#4 What is the Best Ergonomic Gaming Chair in 2017 ($800+)?
If you don’t like DXRacer chairs and want something that looks more traditional, but still has excellent ergonomic design and comfort, you might be ready to check out the most expensive chairs that retailers offer.
These chairs don’t recline as far back as DXRacers, and they might not look as stylish, or feel as comfortable at first, but these chairs are built for pure functionality and ergonomic design.
You will find these chairs in Fortune 500 companies with workers who spend 10+hours a day on the computer, and even a lot of gamers have started adapting brands like Herman Miller and Steelcase even if it’s not as “cool” as DXRacer chairs. Popular YouTuber/Gamer “iDubbz” even uses a Steelcase Leap chair.
Steelcase Leap – Best Gaming Chair 2017 for Ergonomics?
My favorite premium ergonomic office chair that I use as a gaming chair, in 2017, is still the Steelcase Leap. One thing that annoys me is how a lot of people are starting to recommend the Steelcase Gesture, just because it’s the newest chair from Steelcase. I’ve tried both chairs myself and owned both at one point, (I use the Steelcase Leap as my main chair now) but I had to return the Gesture (and pay $100+ for shipping!).
(And yes, I do have a standing desk. I recommend getting one if you can afford it. (It’s this one.)
If you’re wondering why I didn’t like the Gesture, here’s why. The Gesture, while it has very good customization features comparable to most other ergonomic chairs in the same price range, just didn’t hit my back right. It’s made for shorter users, but I can’t recommend a chair at this price point if it doesn’t even come in different sizes.
It just seems like a design flaw, but the website doesn’t ship the chair with adjustable lumbar support (unlike the Leap), it only sells this version of the chair in person, which is a HUGE flaw for a chair that costs even more than the Steelcase Leap. After using the chair for a day, my back was screaming in agony, no matter what controls I fiddled with. I would have honestly preferred a folding camping chair than the Gesture.
Nothing comes close to the built in back support that the Leap has. It’s crazily inventive in the design, and no matter your seat angle, the back support just “fits.” If you look at the back of the chair, you can already get some idea of why it feels so comfortable.
Besides the great back design and lumbar support, the Steelcase Leap also has some of the best armrests in the market since you can adjust them side to side and up or down. Combined with adjustable seat depth, adjustable back tension, adjustable lumbar support, and adjustable back tilt, you have one of the most customizable chairs on this list. Remember I mentioned the advantage of high-end ergonomic chairs?
Herman Miller Embody – Most Expensive Best Gaming Chair 2017?
If you have a bit more money ($1000+) and want a serious candidate for the best gaming chair of 2017, you might want to check out the Herman Miller Embody. This chair looks super futuristic, and its back support is so advanced it looks like some sort of spine-like body armor. The Embody is a fantastic gaming chair in 2017 since you don’t have to adjust it or configure it to your liking (like you would with the Steelcase Leap).
The back automatically conforms to your posture since it’s made up of interlocking “pixel support pieces” that conform to your movements. It distributes your weight evenly as you sit and reduces back pressure.
The chair is also very adjustable, and the tilt technology is among the best in any chair I’ve seen. A lot of other chairs work best in one position, but the Embody almost encourages you to move around which is great for staying loose and comfortable.
#5 Editors Choice for Best Gaming Chair 2017
Each chair has their pros and cons, and each chair excels in a particular environment or budget. Like you, I am restrained by things like budget, space, and what my girlfriend thinks looks “nice.” Right now, I’m alternating and testing various chairs, but my go-to recommendation for the best gaming chair in 2017 would be the Steelcase Leap. Check out our Steelcase Leap Review to see our full thoughts on the chair!
I use to have a DXRacer Sentinel, and that brand, as well as Maxonomic chairs and other similar chairs also have a place however, and I see a lot of people liking them (and an equal amount disliking them). I think overall, though, that Steelcase chairs are better, but they are more expensive and don’t look as cool. Every time I see a popular YouTuber using a DXRacer or LinusTechTips using Maxonomic chairs, my heart strings pull a little bit, but I know the reason these people have these chairs are because they are trendier and cheaper, and comfortable enough–but not necessarily better.
Make no mistake, the DXRacer series is awesome since I could recline in it without worrying about it falling over (it has a huge weight limit), and it looks super cool with the colorful pillows (the pillows are also awesome for a headrest), and the fabric is waterproof which is awesome. However, the Steelcase Leap looks more like a normal office chair, and I find that the higher price point has given the chair some truly impressive features and customizability that isn’t present in DXRacers (even though DXRacer’s have amazing fabric, are CRAZY sturdy, and very cool to look at).
The Embody is also a great chair, and I encourage you to get it if you can afford it, I can’t however–and I’ve only gotten to test it out in stores and through friends. There are also a lot of other office chairs out there on random websites that should have most features you’d need like this chair I reviewed, but there is a reason (the pinnacle of design + comfort) why some brands have gotten so popular like Steelcase which lead in the ergonomic market.
One reason I love writing about chairs is because there are SO many and a lot of chairs excel in certain ways and are weaker in others. I could spend the rest of my life reviewing chairs (and I probably will) but I’m 100% sure that’s not something you’d want to do. So out of all of these gaming chairs in 2017, which would I pick for you as the average joe who just wants a good gaming chair? To make it easy for you, I’d say the Steelcase Leap.