(That’s assuming you sit in a chair for at least 35 hours a week, which you really shouldn’t do.) Again, chair size makes a big difference: Our size A and B testers found the chair a bit more difficult to recline in and maintain the tilt angle, but our size C tester said the chair reclined too easily and was difficult to lock into place, even though the chair has a tilt tension control knob. With that said, Herman Miller has a slight edge over Steelcase, with fewer exclusions on certain aspects of the chair and some additional services. In our latest round of testing, we found that the sub-$100 AmazonBasics Mid-Back Mesh Office Chair is probably your best bet if you’re looking for an inexpensive office chair that offers height adjustability. Buying used: The classic Aeron design sold prior to 2016 is still great for most people, and it’s still widely available at office liquidators and on Craigslist—sometimes new—for less than $400. By the end of the week, a couple more of us were using identical support pillows. And in this Herman Miller Embody vs Steelcase Leap showdown, we’ll see which of these chairs takes the lead over another. The unframed rubber back has an unusual look that will draw the eyes of every guest who comes into your office or home. We didn’t test it this time, but it tends to review well and is worth a look if you like a foam seat but want a mesh back. The Gesture has an impressive range of adjustability, and it’s easy to maneuver and get into just the right configuration for your task and body type. You have to remember orders, deal with cranky or stingy customers, and there's a lot of physical labor involved. Get the Steelcase Amia from Amazon for $695, Configuration: Adjustable height and seat depth; fully customizable arms. We get it: most of the top ergonomic chairs are expensive. However, in the end, comfort and ergonomics put the Ignition 2.0 ahead of the Fully Desk Chair as our budget pick. But because you can’t lock the armrests into those positions, you may find the extra adjustability more of a nuisance rather than a benefit, as Wirecutter editor Ben Keough did: He noted that the armrests had a tendency to inadvertently rotate or slide forward when he stood up, and he often needed to readjust them when he sat down again. Plus, if the Gesture and Aeron are too boring-looking for you, the Sayl has a distinctive design that draws you in (or repels you) the second you see it. A proper supportive chair to encourage good posture. You cannot adjust the seat depth—another reason picking the correct-size Aeron is so important. Two flexible pads on the Aeron support this region, so whether you find yourself sitting properly, hunched in concentration, or taking a quick nap, they will adjust to your new posture. It’s inoffensive, and the mesh back means it’ll be breathable in the summer. Herman Miller and Steelcase offer two of the best office chair warranties in the industry. The Mira 2 office chair has a friendlier price, so it would be a more acceptable option for people on a budget. Office Chairs. Although the back is notably firm and supportive, because of its size this chair is best suited to petite people. All of the Gesture’s control knobs are on the right side and easy to access. The fabric padding is comfortable and provides good upright posture, but overall feels a bit stiffer than other fabric seats. Photo: Sarah Kobos. These kinds of Herman Miller Office Chairs are best for office and workplaces. We found the thick, fabric-padded seat to be better cushioned and more comfortable than the other chairs in our roundup. (In normal-speak, size A is small, B is medium, and C is large.) If you are looking for an office chair with maximum comfort and optimal style, there are two chairs that you should think about before making a purchase. The company has been in the office furniture manufacturing business since 1905. However, in previous rounds of testing, it was universally reviled. Video: Kyle Fitzgerald, You have to reach for the back of the chair to adjust the height of the arms on the Aeron. Easy assembly my ass. Additionally, the height of the backrest is adjustable, so you can lower or heighten it based on where you want more support. In fact, the majority of the chairs we tested weren’t bad at all; frequently they just didn’t fit a wide enough spectrum of our testers. If you find one used for a good price, if you prefer the look of the Leap, or if you just don’t need the arm adjustability of the Gesture, the Leap might serve you well. The Steelcase Think is similar to the Amia in that while none of our testers found it bad, only one person put it in their top three. We liked the approach of adjusting them without any buttons, however, they are made with hard and inflexible plastic. None of our testers liked the Steelcase Series 1, complaining that it was too short, the arms were too tall, and it was generally uncomfortable for sitting longer than a couple of hours at a time. Herman Miller chairs are super, duper pricey, in short. Starting Price Range: $715.00 – $1240.00 + Free Shipping Our #1 alternative to the Aeron chair is another chair from Herman Miller, the Mirra 2. The mesh seat and back make the Aeron a better option than foam upholstered chairs in warm climates or for anyone who runs hot. I've seen some other comments here on Reddit about how people are using a rubber mallet to hammer the molded plastic into place so the screw holes align. Two of the newest chairs we tested came from Steelcase and Herman Miller. With its leather padding, fully adjustable armrests, seat-depth adjustment, and the highly intuitive design of the built-in lumbar support, it embodies the word professional. If the sculpted foam design appeals to you, the Freedom might be worth trying out for yourself if you can find it at a nearby retailer and if you feel comfortable shopping in person. Since everyone is different, we found chairs that fit a range of body types, but you should always try a chair out before purchasing. That problem, coupled with an extremely firm seat and an inability to recline more than about 15 degrees, led us to conclude that you’re better off saving up for a more comfortable chair. Configuration: Adjustable height, seat angle, and tilt-tension; fully configurable arms; tilt limiter, Special features: PostureFit SL lumbar support; can purchase separate adjustments. The Autonomous ErgoChair 2 combines a mesh back and a foam seat for a decent (about $360) price. *At the time of publishing, the price was $303. Most people will want the optional adjustable armrests, which can slide up or down, in or out, or diagonally inward and outward to help support their arms during different tasks. Vertagear S-Line SL4000 Racing Series Gaming Chair Rev. The details: When you sit in a Freedom Task, it automatically adjusts as you recline. The casters roll smoothly over hardwood (you definitely could win a chair roller derby race with this). We spent months researching the top-selling ergonomic chairs to find which ones really have your back. This chair might do in the short term, but you’ll have to plan on replacing it soon if you want to invest in a chair for the long term. The best office chairs provide great lumbar support, with extra padding for the natural curve in your lower back. Get the LoveHome Memory Foam Lumbar Support Back Cushion from Amazon for $25.99. When she transitioned to office work, the back pain continued to flare. Keep in mind, however, that in long-term testing we’ve found that the Gesture’s and Aeron’s seat comfort is better. If you’re the right size, though, it’s a good chair at a good price. For previous versions of this guide, we also tested and dismissed the following office chairs: The Steelcase Leap was once our pick for the best office chair and later became our runner-up. The Herman Miller Aeron is a great chair, but it is a little pricey. Specifications. Even with its unique backrest design, we found the chair lacking in other departments. The Ignition 2.0’s optional adjustable lumbar support actually works and is noticeable: When our testers moved the back support up or down, it stayed in place and provided extra support where they placed it. Here are our most helpful tips on what you can do to keep it clean. Herman Miller was founded in 1905 and Steelcase in 1912. For the price, we think the Fully chair is still worth considering if you know that you like a firm seat, don’t need strong lumbar support, prefer the chair’s aesthetics, or want a budget-priced chair with a higher (330-pound) weight limit. Our testers said that compared with similar chairs, the Gesture hit the right balance between firmness and plushness, and it was far better than budget chairs, which were almost-like-sitting-on-a-wooden-chair firm. The Mira 2 office chair has a friendlier price, so it would be a more acceptable option for people on a budget. *At the time of publishing, the price was $1,033. We liked the springy mesh seat back, and we think the Ignition 2.0’s armrests, which consist of a soft plastic with light cushioning, will last a while. 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