Types of Gaming Chair
There are three main types of gaming chair and which one feels right for you will depend on which you perceive to be the most comfortable, the amount of manoeuvrability you need and the space available to you in your home.
The main types are:
A fairly new and revolutionary style of gaming chair, rockers are what often come to mind when you think of gaming chairs.
Most often used by console gamers, they have no base and sport a curved design which is great for reclining and playing casually.
A sort of twist on the classic office chair design, swivel gaming chairs model themselves after racing car seats, with neck and lumbar supports and extra padding designed to make sitting in it for long periods of time more comfortable. These seats are then placed on the familiar 360-degree swivel base with caster wheels, helping you to manoeuvre around a room easily and effectively.
Swivel seats are therefore most popular for PC gamers or those who mainly play video games at a desk, as they keep you upright, provide great support and allow you to quickly adjust positions across the desk if needed.
A pedestal gaming chair is most commonly just a rocker-style seat with a pedestal base. This base usually allows a 360-degree swivel but is overall less manoeuvrable than a wheeled office-style chair. These are best for console gamers who want to be relaxed and reclined while playing but dislike the low, ground-level style of the standard rocker and its lack of static support.
Immersive or Non-immersive
Another key difference between the different types of gaming chair is whether they are immersive or not.
In general, it’s very rare that a PC swivel chair will boast immersive features and it’s mostly rocker and pedestal chairs that host such features.
The main immersive features a chair might have are built-in audio surround sound or vibration settings designed to correspond with actions in-game. These can help you feel more involved in what you are playing and make the gaming experience more enjoyable.
If you are purchasing an immersive chair, you want to make sure the audio quality is sufficient and to your liking. Most sound systems will come with ratio descriptions, which can be confusing if you don’t know what they mean. Generally though, the numbers pertain to the number of audio channels and the number of subwoofers offered by a chair.
For example, a 2.1 sound system hosts two audio channels and 1 subwoofer.
In layman’s terms, this is a left and right speaker on the chair, with 1 subwoofer to provide plenty of bass.
So if you want your chair to provide an even more immersive experience, you’ll want more channels (speakers) and if you want it to be more powerful, you’ll want more subwoofers (although this is quite rare).
Gaming Chair Connection
Ideally, if using an immersive gaming chair, you want connecting it to your console, TV etc. to be a simple and hassle-free experience. The easiest way to do this is of course with a hardwire connection, in which you connect the chair via a cable.
However, this also leads to trailing wires and a less clean set-up, which is why wireless and Bluetooth compatible options are becoming increasingly popular!
If you’re of a larger build, there’s no use buying a skimpy little chair with armrests that make you feel imprisoned on either side. Make sure the dimensions of a chair are accommodating to your size and that the chair can also support your weight.
One of the most important features of any gaming chair is its adaptability, as it needs to be able to be altered into your perfect seat.
A good quality gaming seat should therefore offer an adjustable height, reclining features and adjustable armrests to help you fashion it into the most comfortable chair possible.
Sometimes gaming chairs can take up a lot of space in a room, so it’s not convenient to have them out all the time. To solve this, some gaming chairs are foldable and so can be more easily stored away should you need them to be.
Gamers are known for sitting at their console or PC for hours at a time, which can be bad for your posture and uncomfortable over time. The best gaming chairs will help alleviate this through an ergonomic shape that moulds to your posture.
Many comfortable designs also feature neck and lumbar pillows, while memory foam features will also help to make your seat more in-tune with your body.
Although this isn’t really that important, most gaming chairs feature a flash of colour of some kind and in some cases feature designs and graphics to appeal to certain gamers. There’s plenty of choices out there, so why settle for a boring black model if that’s not your style?
Standard gaming chairs should reflect a racing car seat in terms of shape and material. This means a quality chair should provide a steel or alloy framework inside to ensure maximum durability and an authentic ergonomic style. Most gaming chairs then choose to use a kind of faux leather that’s both breathable and aesthetically pleasing as the outer material.
Something a lot of people forget when purchasing a gaming chair is that they almost always require you to assemble them! Before you buy, try and check the specifications to see how many individual parts make up the chair to judge whether the assembly will be overly long or difficult.
Occasionally, some gaming chairs will flat out tell you how long the assembly takes, with the longest sometimes taking up to an hour!