If there is one thing we know a little bit about it is chairs, and that includes the best studio chairs. If you spend a lot of time sitting and you have lower back pain, it is 90% certain it has something to do with your chair. So if you spend hours in your studio, you can either be comfortable or uncomfortable. Your choice?
Ergonomics is a word you will hear bandied around like there is no tomorrow. ‘Every’ chair is ergonomically designed according to the manufacturers. It is used to convince buyers of the quality of the product.
The word has a Greek derivation, and Ergon means work. Quite simply. If the word is broken down into its constituent parts, it actually means Work with natural laws — the idea of being able to work naturally. However, if you look at the number of chairs that are ‘ergonomically designed’ with so many variations of position and styling. They can’t all be correct, given that the idea is a science to make you sit safely.
We tend to ignore it and look at more basic principles of comfort and safety. We’ll leave the ‘ergonomics,’ important as they may be, to the marketing people.
You’d think it is going to be easy to choose a chair. You think so? To start with, what will it be used for? If it is for mixing, then comfort comes first. But will the comfy chair with its thick padded arms and squeaky seat work when you are tracking? We don’t think so.
For the purposes of this exercise, we will be looking at chairs for mixing and mastering or tracking other people. If you track yourself, you are more likely to need a stool.
So, basically, for sitting staring at a mixing console, a computer screen, or both. Back support, a good level of comfort, and it needs to be able to rotate and move. Finding the best recording studio chair is down to personal preference. But there are some qualities that the chair needs to have. So, let’s go through the options and find the perfect Studio Chair for you…
Top 10 Best Studio Chair To Buy 2020 Reviews
1 Office Star High Back ProGrid Back FreeFlex Seat
This chair is what you might call a multi-purpose chair. By that we mean it is suitable for most people for a variety of occupations. There are plenty of adjustment controls to get the position about right. It has a seat height adjuster that is pneumatic that is easily controlled with a single touch.
There are also further positional controls for the tilt of the seat and the forward pitch. The back height, though, is fixed to either a high back or mid-back. The height of the arms is also adjustable.
It is well put together and made from durable materials. The important aspects are solid enough, and the action on the controls are smooth. It rotates quite nicely and feels secure.
It is not an unusually large chair measuring 29 inches by 26 by 42 inches high. However, it is quite heavy though at fifty pounds. The back support material is what they call breathable. One very good aspect of its design and manufacturer is its certification. It has been given a low chemical emission rating. This means there are no harmful chemicals you will be exposed to.
It can’t be argued that there are not enough controls to get a comfortable position for working. It is a chair that is designed to fit most people.
So, to the comfort level. The design does not fill us with confidence. The arms are not attached to the main body of the chair. They are fixed only at seat level. This makes them vulnerable, in our opinion. It also indicates they are going to flex with any weight applied to them while seated.
The back of the chair is also not padded at all. There is a lumbar curve at the lower end. But that doesn’t give much back support.
As a budget price seating option, it is a reasonable chair. But we are not convinced about the comfort level over a period of use.
- Quite well made and put together.
- Lots of controls to get a comfortable position
- Arm and back support are inadequate.
2 Office Factor Executive
The Office Factor executive is a chair designed to give you support and comfort. It is also designed to be very stable but also gives you a decent amount of movement. It has a solid frame with a five-arm base. Each extended arm is fitted with a PU caster that is smooth and doesn’t make any noise. Because the base on contact with the floor is quite wide, it lessens the risk of falling over.
The back of the chair is designed so that it can be leaned back. It can then be locked into one of four positions. This avoids the need to keep on making adjustments. The armrests can be lifted out of the way if you prefer to work without them. This is quite a good feature as it does allow the chair a little versatility in use. Probably still not suitable for tracking while seated.
Height can be adjusted easily with the gas lift that makes sure you can work at a comfortable height. The backrest has an adjuster that will either add or lessen resistance when you lean back.
It has a curved backrest with a plastic frame and a mesh covering. The mesh is designed to allow air to circulate around the body to prevent you from getting hot. As with many of these chairs, the back is built with what they call lumbar support.
The idea is to hold your back upright while supporting your lower back. This applies a pushing motion to move your shoulders back. All well and good in design and ‘ergonomics’ but not so good in reality.
When working at a desk, you tend to lean forward, and this is simply what happens. No one sits bolt upright, especially working on a computer. Therefore this action doesn’t work. Yes, the support is in your lower back, but it is nowhere else.
It is a nice looking chair and is reasonably lightweight at 34 pounds.
- Some good adjustments for height etc.
- Stable in its contact with the floor.
- It doesn’t give as much back support as it claims.
3 High-Back Gaming Chair PC Chair
This is an interesting chair that looks like it belongs more in a Star Trek film than in a recording studio. It has some decent features, but it is either a chair you are going to love… or not.
It appears to have been designed more with gaming in mind than any other activity. And has a high back with adjustable support for the lower back and even a headrest. It is manufactured in a PU leather, which in layman’s terms means artificial leather. Like most simulated materials, it does have its advantages as it is easy to clean. It can also be made to feel very soft and comfortable.
There is a metal base for strength and stability, though it doesn’t seem as stable as it possibly should. The castors in each leg are nylon, which is durable and noiseless. It will turn through a 360-degree circle. Adjustments to the seated position are a bit sparse, but you can raise and lower the height of the seat.
The armrests are fixed with no adjusters and not particularly well-padded. He cushions on the seat and the back area, however, are nicely padded and comfortable. There are ‘wings’ added to the upper back area, which support the shoulders.
It is certainly a chair that will draw attention but not all for the right reasons. The color scheme is a little garish for us, and as we said at the beginning, you will like it, or not. We can see this being used by a gamer but cannot picture it in a serious recording environment. It is affordable, though, which may be an attraction.
- Plenty of padding on the seat and back area.
- Cost-effective chair.
- Lack of real adjustments to the seated position.
4 AmazonBasics Mid-Back Desk Office Chair with Armrests
If what you want to buy is a very basic, affordable chair, then this may suit. It makes little pretense about the dreaded ‘E’ word and is just a simple chair that is not expensive. Good idea.
It is not a large chair measuring 25.2 x 24 x 40.4 inches and weighing just 23 pounds. There vis a single control that operates the pneumatic system to get the seat height right for you. This control has a dual function. Not only does it raise the height, but if you pull it out, it allows you to tilt back slightly. Just changes the angle of the seat, really.
It is made largely of a toughened plastic, which most chairs are and will take an individual up to 225 pounds. It has a contoured mesh back and also a padded seat with a mesh covering. This appears to be a simple thing to include, but some people do not like the simulated leather finish.
If it gets hot, you can stick to it, and it feels uncomfortable. A mesh covering prevents that. It can’t be as soft and comfy, of course, so its personal preference.
It has a five-pronged base that is low to the floor and, therefore, stable. And features five arms that are fitted with dual casters that make movement smooth and stable. It rotates 2360 degrees. One thing we don’t like about it much is the black mesh-covered T-shaped armrests. These are vulnerable and not particularly stable or comfortable.
It comes with a user manual, which presumably says ‘take the chair and sit down.’ Joking aside, if you are looking for a bargain for your studio, then this could be the best affordable studio chair. Just remember that it isn’t the most comfortable, but it will depend on how long you or anyone else sits in it. All things considered, it isn’t a bad buy at all.
- Affordable price.
- Reasonable design and quite stable.
- Not the most comfortable.
5 Space Air Grid Mid-Back Swivel Chair
This is a chair by Space seating. They manufacturer a variety of chairs, a good percentage of which are very similar in style. They do, though, produce a few very up-market models as well. This particular chair is a mid-back swivel chair in a very common design.
It has a padded seat that has a contour that fits you as you sit. The back of the seat is a plastic frame with a mesh material. They refer to this as an Air Grid though it is the same mesh idea as many other brands. It does allow a movement of air, which will reduce heat in circumstances where it is required. And built into the chair is a lower back lumbar support.
There is a set height adjuster that is a pneumatic operation that is a simple one-touch operation. There is also a tilt tensioning control so that you can get a comfortable angle to sit. The arms of the chair are just attached to the seating area and not to the back of the chair.
In our view, this is just a design idea and not a functional design. Not being attached to the back makes them vulnerable and unstable. And it doesn’t help the stability of the back of the chair either. They are adjustable, though, which doesn’t add to their overall security — not a good idea in our book and presumably done for aesthetic effect.
There is a five-armed base which is elevated around its fulcrum at the center of the chair. Usually, for stability, the lower these movements are, the more stable they are. Elevating them doesn’t really help. The castors fitted are specially prepared for carpet use. This might make them unsuitable for other surfaces. Space Air does provide alternatives that are not included.
It is a basic chair with a few potential comfort and practical problems as far as we are concerned. It is not a cheap item, either.
- Nice padding on the seated area.
- Expensive for what it is.
- The design appears to offer future problems.
6 ROC-N-SOC Nitro Throne
In a recording studio, you do need a variety of seating. Some for the engineers at the desk, maybe a few for invited onlookers occasionally. But you also need what drummers call a throne.
This sort of chair can perform a variety of functions apart from being anywhere near those people with sticks. This can serve an engineer on the desk, but it is also a ‘tracking chair.’ If you need a chair to sit and play guitar, bass maybe even a keyboard or a solo orchestral instrument. This is a good option.
This particular stool (we will call it a stool) is fully adjustable up to a height of up to two feet. It has a contoured seat designed to fit your shape as you sit for extra comfort. The foldable bass unit is tough and sturdy and has a three-angled design for contact with the floor.
All of the welded seals are inspected and ensured that they are correctly finished. Under the chair, the parts are all metal and chrome-plated. Not only looks good, but it is a lot more hard-wearing than artificial materials. The three contact legs are given rubber feet.
The seat design allows you to turn around easily and even spin. This means less body movement to turn round, which means over a period of time, less fatigue. It is fitted with an under-seat shock absorber to alleviate some bounce. This, in turn, makes it less tiring on the back because of the subtle amount of ‘give’ in the seat.
Not only for drummers, this is also a well-made seat for tracking or even for the engineer who doesn’t like all the ergonomics. It is not a cheap alternative, though. Could fall into the category for the best affordable studio chair.
- Well-made, durable, and stable.
- Good materials.
- Some will find it expensive.
7 Fender 24-Inch Custom Shop Pinstripe Bar Stool
Of course, we are talking about chairs for recording studios. That means music and more often than not guitars. Mention guitars, and you will usually find Fender lurking around somewhere. And when you do find them, they usually provide a quality product. We say, usually, because, with respect to this legendary name in music, this might not be their best effort or their finest hour.
Calling it a bar stool probably is not the best description. Sit at the average bar with this, and you won’t see over it. However, we were a little confused as to exactly what this chair actually does. It is well-made, of course, it is. And has a very classic line in its styling, but what is its prime purpose?
It is made of one-inch steel tubes that are of a particularly heavy gauge. The welded joints are fine, and it has a footrest and little rubber feet.
If you want to change the position, you are going to have to pick it up. There are no elevators or height adjusters. It really is just a stool. It will be ok for using for tracking if you are playing seated. But it is even a little limited for that given its lack of movement,
The padding on the seat is a little sparse as well. Underneath the padding, the shape of the seat is made of wood. You can definitely feel it through the padding, which will make a long session uncomfortable without a walk every 30 minutes or so.
It is a nice looking, well-made chair that is ok for short term use and will add something Fender to your recording room. We think maybe it might not get an awful lot of use. It is at a budget price, though. So if you need something that will be used occasionally, it might fit the bill.
- Well-made with tough materials.
- Budget price.
- Rather uncomfortable with a lack of movement and adjustment options
8 Boss Office Products High Back
Are you looking for a quality studio chair with a rugged, tough build, that will never let you down? Well, it seems that Boss Office Products may have exactly what you need. Just one look at this, and we think that this might be the best chair for a recording studio around. But before we get too excited, let’s take a closer look…
It is a big chair at 28 x 27 x 48.5 inches and weighing 43 pounds. It is nicely upholstered with a polyurethane infused Leather Plus material. It’s soft and yet durable. The armrests are well-padded, and there is built-in lumbar support for the lower back.
The seat has a pneumatic lift mechanism to allow you to adjust the height easily and comfortably. There is also a tilt and tensioning mechanism. Once you have found the best position, you can lock it into place.
It has a five-armed base with a low point of contact with rubber inserts on the ends of the arms in case you rest your feet on them. The dual castors are hooded and are smooth and suitable for any surface, The base has a 25-inch width, and the swivel of the chair is 360 degrees. The base arm material is metal, as is the main construction of the armrests.
For the engineer working at a recording console, this is a great chair. Comfortable but rugged with enough control to get a comfortable position exactly right. And at a very competitive price. It is going to be a major contender for the Best Studio Chair, but will it be the winner? Read on to find out…
- Great design and build quality.
- Comfortable with good adjustment control.
9 Herman Miller Sayl Ergonomic Office Chair
Hermann Miller is an American company based in Michigan. They were founded in 1905 and specialize in office furniture and home furnishings. They ought to know a bit about creating a chair.
We left the dreaded ’E’ word in the title with this one. This particular chair has been designed by them for the office but can be applied to studio use. It has, to say the least, and eye-catching design. Again, it will be a design you like… or not.
Now, this is a reputable company, so we are not going to be too negative. But sometimes we wonder what the designers are thinking. Do they think that a chair that resembles a spider’s web is going to be attractive?
There is no back to this chair. It resembles a ship’s hammock with a support strut up the back. Getting out of it might be similar to extricating yourself from a bean bag. The armrests might look ‘designer,’ but they look to us like they have been stuck on as an afterthought. Not being attached to the body of the back of the chair must make them vulnerable.
The build quality, however, is good. We are not disputing that. A five-arm base fitted with dual castors is a strong and stable design. The color scheme also tastefully done with its Black Frame with Licorice Crepe Seat. Despite all its apparent lack of material and support, it still weighs 36 pounds.
However, we are looking for the best chair for a recording studio, and we don’t necessarily want a fashion statement. We want practicality and comfort at a reasonable price. When we saw the price point of this chair, we needed to sit down. Needless to say, this will not be high on our list of the best recording studio chairs currently available.
- The five-arm base and the castors are well-designed and made.
- Everything about the design to us is pointless, and we are not even going to mention the price.
10 CLATINA High Swivel Executive Chair
Another chair built with this minimalistic design that appears to be so popular. This chair, again, seems to have been designed for the office.
Someone once said to us casually about working in an office, that the companies make sure that the chairs are always very basic. They don’t want you to get too comfortable and start relaxing. There is a certain truth to that.
This chair, like so many others, doesn’t go up to your back past your shoulders. You can’t lay back and relax a bit, which is what you sometimes do in a studio on a listen back.
However, you can adjust the height with the gas pneumatic control and even the depth of this chair. You can also adjust the armrest by changing the angle or height. The armrest is attached to the fittings on the base near the back, which gives it some strength. There is also a lumbar support setting.
As is common with many chairs today, there is not a solid back. It has a mesh back that allows you to keep cool when hot. The back is adjustable though with three positions that go down to down to 135 degrees. It will swivel through 360 degrees and supports people up to a weight limit of 275 pounds.
The chair has a strong five-armed base made from reinforced steel with quality castors. It has a high build quality. It is not a particularly cheap chair, though.
- Decent positional controls.
- Strong steel base.
- It is not really what you would call a comfortable chair.
Best Studio Chair Buyers Guide
Buying The Best Chair For Your Studio…
So what is the best type of chair for your studio? We are assuming that we mean for production, recording, mastering. An engineer’s role. There are some things to consider. You need to be comfortable. That is about it as far as we are concerned. There seems to be so much marketing poured into this subject.
Mesh On The Back To Keep You Cool?
We don’t know of a studio without aircon in the control room. That negates that selling point. And the ‘E’ word is thrown about like confetti at a wedding. If there were such a thing as an ergonomic chair, they would all look the same. They don’t, and therefore, we must assume some are, and some aren’t. But which ones? Back to our original statement. What is comfortable wins.
If the chair is for an engineer, they won’t be bothered about the angle of armrests or whether they are removable. It just needs to be comfortable, be able to move easily, and swing through 360 degrees.
If you can find that without spending a fortune, you have cracked it. And, of course, you can.
More Studio Paraphernalia
You’re obviously going t need lots of other equipment to go with your lovely new studio chair, so please check out our in-depth reviews of the Best Studio Headphones for Home Recording, the Best Studio Monitor Speakers, the Best Microphone Preamp, the Best Vocal Mics and the Best Microphones Recording Electric Guitar currently available.
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Comfortable, excellent head and neck support, and good movement controls. It has everything we need!