But the right gaming chair can change your life. Let opponents wince and crane while you 2-1-2 or mine in comfort.
The best computer gaming chairs can even improve your standings, since they support your lower back, upper back, shoulders, neck, hips, head, and arms. That good posture reduces strain and pain so you can focus on defeating Krugs and Husks in style.
In this review, you’ll find the best PC gaming chair (the Noblechairs ICON), the best budget gaming chair, plus the best gaming chair under $200 and under $100 (the Homall is a real knockout). We’ve also sourced the best office gaming chair for workweek warriors, and the best gaming chair for big guys and gals. Ready player one?
What makes for the best PC gaming chairs?
Before we jump into our list of the 10 best gaming chairs, let’s take a peek at the key features you should consider while you shop.
If you aren’t going to go for a custom-crafted chair (and who can swing that?), you need something that bends to your will. Look for adjustable 4D armrests, height, back tilt, headrest, and removable cushions to dial in perfect posture.
Consider your system before you jump. Console gamers will appreciate a beanbag or pedestal-style chair, while the best PC gaming chairs are racing-style.
Three months later, the vinyl’s cracked, the cushions are flat, and the left armrest flops. Not so with the chairs on our list. Our best computer gaming chairs get high marks for staying power.
Some gamers swear by headrests, but others say they’re window-dressing. This one’s down to preference. Want speakers in the headrest? Some chairs do that, too.
The option to kick back at different angles can give your back a break. It’s when we’re rigid, holding the same posture for long periods, that we get repetitive stress injuries.
Health risks of gaming
eSports and gaming aren’t the NFL, so you won’t get a concussion or torn ACL. But gamers do risk a whole menu of possible injuries, many stemming from the wrong gaming chair choice.
Gamers can even die from thrombosis - a blood clot from prolonged sitting that can lodge in the heart, brain, or lungs. A poor gaming chair can boost that risk if it has meager padding that constricts blood flow.
The best gaming chairs can’t sub for frequent breaks and regular exercise, but they can significantly improve your gaming and/or office ergonomics.
The 10 best gaming chairs for 2021
1. Noblechairs ICON - Best gaming chair of all
If gaming is your life and money is no object, spring for the Noblechairs ICON. The ICON is the one-size-fits-all best computer gaming chair, bar none. It’s fully adjustable and ergonomic, and masquerades convincingly as a straight black office chair. This gaming office chair gets sky-high review scores from paid reviewers and customers alike.
The downside? It’s expensive, but not prohibitively. Expect to pay over $300 for the standard setup and $500+ in leather.
It’s got extra-firm cushions - that’s a good thing - and the neck pillow is super comfortable. This is also one of the best gaming chairs for big guys and gals. If you’re on the small side, check out the Noblechairs EPIC for a more compact design.
Max weight: 330 lbs
Recline: 90 degrees to 135 degrees
Cushions: Ergonomic cold foam
2. Homall Gaming Chair/Office Chair - Best budget gaming chair & best gaming chair under $100
If you need the flat-out best gaming chair under $100, the Homall Gaming Chair/Office Chair is your Huckleberry. It’s a fan-favorite for thousands of customer reviewers, and it behaves in many ways like a much more expensive gaming chair for less than one-third the price.
This chair can fully recline, rotate, and roll just like the big boss chairs. It’s got the same PU-leather upholstery and the same steel frame. It holds the same weight as all but the top-tier, most expensive gaming chairs. Finally, it lays back all the way. All around, this is the best gaming chair for your buck.
Durable after long use
Recline: 90 degrees to 180 degrees
Max weight: 300 lbs
Included headrest and lumbar cushions
Very low cost
3. Secretlab Titan/Omega 2020 - Best gaming chair for big guys
Do you need the absolute best gaming chair for big guys and gals? Then do yourself a favor and test-drive the Secretlab Titan 2020. It gets top-flight ratings from thousands of customers and professional reviewers.
It’s solid, comfortable, and comes with a 5-year warranty. It doesn’t have the highest weight-rating on our list of the best PC gaming chairs, but it can crow about the highest comfort score for the big and tall.
The Secretlab Titan hits the same price range as the ICON. Instead of an external lumbar pillow, it provides adjustable interior lumbar support, which is nifty and unique. It also boasts nap-ready full-length backrest recline and class 4 hydraulic lifts so your settings stay put. Are you smaller? See the Secretlab Omega for compact body types.
Max weight: 290 lbs
Cushions: Memory foam
4. Clutch Chairz PewDiePie Edition - Best computer gaming chair for middle budgets
The 70 cm base is tip-resistant and has been tested to withstand up to 2 tons. (Yes, you read that right.) The biggest drawback? This chair is so insanely popular the manufacturer can’t keep up with the demand. If that doesn’t trouble you, sign up for the waitlist. You’ll save over $100 as a thank-you.
Class 4 gas lift
Cold cured foam
5. GTRacing Pro Series - 2nd best budget gaming chair
Want the best gaming chair under $200? Then check out the GTRacing Pro Series. The manufacturer calls it a gaming office chair, but even the basic black version is a bit too supercar-inspired for that. Still, if you want a good gaming chair at less than half the price of the Noblechairs ICON, the GTRacing chair is a safe pick.
One caveat - you’re buying budget, so expect budget results. We wish we could say this chair does everything the ICON does for half the price, but it doesn’t. Several online reviewers complain about durability, especially with the armrests.
Still, if you’re looking for the best budget gaming chair, this one will help you rock your HP OMEN 15t or HP OMEN 17t like a pro. See below for a few more gaming budget chairs.
Max weight: 350 lbs
Recline: 90 degrees to 165 degrees
Cushions: Ergonomic cold foam
6. X Rocker Pro 2.1 - Best PC gaming chair rocker or console rocker
For console champs, the X Rocker Pro 2.1 is the best gaming chair in the arena. It puts you at floor-level in full leather, with four forward-facing speakers built right into the body. Connect wirelessly to your PlayStation, Xbox, and more while you shield-pop like Nick Eh 30.
This is the James Bond gadget of gaming chairs, with vibration motors that sync with your sound system for an immersive and muscle-soothing experience. It even folds away for easy storage. Plus it gets stratospheric reviews from console gamers and pro reviewers en masse.
Max weight: 275 lbs
Side-mounted control panel
Ergonomic back support
7. Autonomous ErgoChair 2 - Best office gaming chair
When your gaming chair can’t look like a gaming chair, choose the Autonomous ErgoChair 2. It’s the best office gaming chair because it would fit in seamlessly at Dunder Mifflin. But don’t let its cubicle-friendly design fool you. This is a supportive, adjustable, and durable chair made with breathable mesh to keep you cool even when you’re not.
The ErgoChair has comfy, soft armrests that move up, down, left, right, back, and forward. Its built-in lumbar support and Italian-style tilt action let you position your posture almost to the millimeter. It also has fully-adjustable armrests, headrest, and seat, making it one of the most adjustable gaming chairs on offer.
Recline: 90 degrees to 110 degrees
Not high-end padding
8. AK Racing Core Series EX Gaming Chair - Good midrange option
Next on our list of the best gaming chairs, the AK Racing Core Series EX is a good middle-budget pick. You’ll pay more straight from the manufacturer, but you’ll find plenty of deals online at just over $200. Its 5-star metal base can take a lot of body English, and its class 4 gas lift is rated to 330 lbs.
This chair has the flattest recline of any on our roster, letting you go all the way horizontal for the odd mid-game meditation session. It comes with headrest and lumbar cushions made of high-density foam for added durability. Plus you can get it in a whole palette of racing colors to match high-performance gaming PCs like the HP OMEN Obelisk desktop PC.
Recline: 90 degrees to 180 degrees
9. Respawn 900 Gaming - Pedestal-style recliner
Why tilt when you can recline? Kick your feet up in this popular racing style gaming chair with a fully-fledged footrest. The Respawn 900 makes our list of best PC gaming chairs because of its unique design. It looks like a streamlined version of your living-room recliner so you can level up while kicking back.
One downfall is its lack of wheels. The armrests are supportive and generous though, and the seat rotates like a barber chair for Dr. Evil-style mobility. All in all, this recliner is well worth the money, and just as at home in the living room as at the gaming desk.
Recline: 135 degrees
Max weight: 275 lbs
Built-in cup holder
Included headrest pillow
10. OFM Essentials Racing Chair - 2nd best gaming chair under $100
Gamers on the cheap will appreciate the OFM Essentials Racing Chair. The list price is up near $300, but major retailers carry it for $80 or less. Better still, you won’t find many crowd-pleasers like this chair in the same price range.
The downside? Durability. After six months, you may find yourself adding an after-market seat cushion to bring it back to fighting trim. On the plus side, you can raise the arms like an airline or movie-theater seat, though its non-adjustable headrest and lumbar support won’t make it ideal for all players.
Here’s a tried-and-tested tip to get the best budget gaming chair that’s really a high-end office chair. Ready? Get a used Herman Miller or Steelcase chair. These are top-rated chairs like the Herman Miller Aeron or Steelcase Gesture.
These chairs are fully ergonomic and adjustable. They cost over $1,000, brand new - and they’re worth it - but they come with a 12-year warranty. You’ll find used options only a year or two into that lifespan for $200 or less online. Not all have headrests (some do) so do your homework before you buy if a headrest is a must for you.
We found the 10 best gaming chairs through an exhaustive survey of tens of thousands of reviews from customers and pro reviewers online, both in trusted news outlets and major retailer websites. We dug deep to find the chief complaints around each one in addition to the biggest selling points.
These chairs aren’t one-size-fits-all. They’re all strong on ergonomics, but some are better for big people, while some fit a small frame best. Some are perfect for the tall gamer or the console gamer, while others are best for those with shorter arms or a smaller living space. As with any furniture purchase, “try before you buy” should be your mantra.
The best gaming chairs are hard to beat
By far the best gaming chair on our list is the Noblechairs ICON for its mix of affordability, adjustability, and durability. Above, we list 9 of the best PC gaming chairs, plus the best budget gaming chair and best console gaming option. Whatever chair you pick, it’s sure to beat the folding metal beasts too many gamers know and loathe.
About the Author
Tom Gerencer is a contributing writer for HP® Tech Takes. Tom is an ASJA journalist, career expert at Zety.com, and a regular contributor to Boys' Life and Scouting magazines. His work is featured in Costco Connection, FastCompany, and many more.
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