Last Updated on August 3, 2021 by David Shaw
Are you planning to get a chair college your room and deciding between a gaming or office chair? We definitely see a lot of people on the internet using those fancy gaming chairs, but do they live up to the expectations? You might also ask, are gaming chairs really worth it for students?
Although gaming chairs are popular in the chair industry, gaming chairs are often not worth the investment as they are often not as comfortable as you think. By favoring style over comfort, gaming chair lacks certain important features for comfort and ergonomics for long use and are often overpriced.
The demand for chairs is a big industry and gaming chairs gained most of their popularity due to their close ties to the gaming industry. Given its popularity, let’s understand further what you’re actually paying for in a gaming chair and comparison to better alternatives for the same, or a cheaper price tag.
Gaming Chairs: Offers More Style Over Comfort
The design of all gaming chairs is just pretty much a knockoff of supercar seats with small extra features and gimmicks to trick you into buying them. Gaming chairs are clearly designed to offer more style than comfort, and not all of them make it look obvious.
More often than not, gaming chairs market their product on the details of the stitching, exterior aesthetic design, and different colors rather than the emphasis on built design for comfort and back support.
Ergonomics and Design
Most gaming chairs lack the ergonomic features and throw-in designs that don’t even make sense in a chair, like side bolsters, 180-degree reclining tilt, pillow cushions, and ‘innovative’ stitching designs.
This is where I think office chairs gain the upper hand as most of them are designed with the right material like mesh to allow airflow, good back support, and built quality. Truth is, if you’re spending more than 2 hours on a chair each day, you will be sweating a lot in gaming chairs especially if where you live is humid and hot. I personally hate sweating when seating on a chair, and I’m sure most people would be annoyed by this. Among the notable features that gaming chairs should fix are:
- Lumbar Support
Lumbar support is crucial to help you maintain a good posture from prolonged seating. You can expect almost all designs of office chairs to have good lumbar support. What I truly dislike about gaming chairs is that they seem to ‘provide’ lumbar support by only offering a pillow or cushion what does far less than what it seems.
- Built Material
There are a ton of cheap gaming chairs under $200, and you can expect their built quality to be very bad. Unless you’re looking at a high-end $500 gaming chair, most low to mid-end gaming chairs just aren’t worth the money for their built quality.
Gaming chairs use a lot of leather or synthetic materials, whereas office chairs use more mesh, which has a huge difference for comfort. Although leather might feel comfortable and sound luxurious, you’ll likely be sweating in those fancy faux leather built.
- Side Bolsters and Buckle Straps
If you need to be reminded, you’re buying a chair for homework and home use, not for a race car. Most gaming chairs adopt the design of side bolster and buckle designs you would normally find in a supercar, and they serve exactly zero purposes for comfort. If you haven’t already known, supercar seats are meant to ‘hold’ you in your seat during high-performance driving, which you definitely won’t while studying.
Pricing: What You Pay For Gaming Chairs
The price of gaming chairs is not exactly cheap, and most people would definitely say they are overpriced. The most reasonable chair we can compare to gaming chairs to are office chairs, so let’s first look at the pricing.
Before you realize it, gaming chairs are priced based on gimmicky tricks and knockoffs between the mix of good ergonomics chair designs and race car seats.
The price of typical good gaming chairs typically starts from $200, with higher-end models priced up to $500. However, often with less than half the price, you easily find more comfortable office chairs with better ergonomic features.
|Gaming Chair Brand||Price||Office Chair Brand||Price|
|Secretlab Omega||$350+||Autonomous Ergochair||$450+|
|Razer Iskur||$499+||Gabrylly Ergonomic Mesh Office Chair||$280+|
|Noblechairs Hero Series||$460+||Costco Bayside Metrex Mesh Office Chair||$150+|
|Corsair T1||$350+||Staples Dexley Mesh Task Chair||$180+|
|AKRacing Core Series EX||$350+||Office Star ProGrid||$170+|
|Dowinx 6689 Gaming Chair||$290+||XUER Ergonomics Office Chair Mesh||$170+|
|Autofull Gaming Chair||$200+||Hbada Office Task Chair||$100+|
Warranty periods of high-end gaming chairs typically are short which lasts anywhere from 2-3 years. With higher-end office chairs of the same price, they typically offer a warranty period up to 10-12 years. Without question, the warranty period of office chair manufacturers offers more product assurance for your money to make sure they last long.
Gaming chairs offer a large variety of replacement parts compared to office chairs, and if there is a high demand for gaming hair replacement parts, then it should suggest something to you. Our guess is that gaming chairs simply have components that wear off or break more easily compared to office chairs, thus they also make money for selling replacement parts.
Annoying Things About Gaming Chairs
Even though gaming chairs market their brands heavily based on the comfort, style, and innovative designs they offer, there are certain complaints you often hear from people who own a gaming chair, mainly:
Those side bolsters look terribly awkward for a desk chair, and you can bet it doesn’t look near as comfortable as it looks. You won’t feel comfortable moving your body around most gaming chairs, and even simple things like crossing your legs on these chairs can very uncomfortable.
Most gaming chairs seem to neglect the lumbar support feature by just throwing in a pillow cushion for the lower back area on their chairs. Honestly, they do a bad job at support our lumbar compared to a curved design which you usually find in office chairs. Another thing that these cushions do is that it can make your lower back sweat by trapping heat, which is can be very uncomfortable.
Lack of Adjustments
When it comes to the number of adjustments, most gaming chairs often disappoint consumers in the range of adjustments they offer. When we are talking about good adjustments in a chair, we mean good reclining mechanics, adjustable arm pad, and tilt locks which you rarely find in gaming chairs.
If we take the price and comparison of high-end gaming and office chairs, the difference in the warranty period for gaming chairs is very disappointing. If there is anything else gaming chair manufacturers can offer consumers for the price they charge, it could easily be a longer warranty period.
To learn more the differences between gaming and office chairs, here’s a video comparison for the expert:
If you’re planning to get a comfortable chair that can easily last you through the entire college, you should expect to spend around $300 more or less for a chair, new or reused. But if you’re ever tempted to buy a gaming chair for its good looks or just because it collaborated with a game you play, we suggest it’s best to invest the money into a better office chair.
But don’t get the wrong idea, a lot of people still find satisfaction in the purchase of a gaming chair, but we just don’t feel they are worth it for students especially if they’re not earning an income yet. Compared to good office chairs, gaming chairs often lack certain functionality and probably won’t live up to your expectations.
Don’t forget to look around listing websites like Craiglist and the local office product stores to look for deals on good chairs. If you can stumble across used Herman Miller or Steelcase office chairs on the internet that are cheap, then don’t hesitate to buy them if they’re still in good condition. In short, if you’re going to spend potentially more than $500 on a chair, you might as well invest in a good office chair that can last a lifetime, which is unlikely the cast for most gaming chairs.