Updated: May 9, 2015

Gaming Chair Review - Which is the best Rocker Game Chair?

If you've been around teenage or college-age boys and men, you've probably seen them. Sitting on the floor, kind of clam-shell shaped, what they call a "rocker chair" or "gaming chair" or "video game chair". You find them in basements, bedrooms, family rooms, dorm rooms. What is a gaming chair and why would anyone want a rocker chair? Two quick answers - comfort and sound effects. For anyone who has ever played video games, you learn pretty quick that the most comfortable position to sit in is leaning back slightly, otherwise your neck is always craned towards the TV. So being able to sit wherever you want in front of the TV in a reclining position is a real bonus -- it can be hard to drag sofas around, pillows don't really give any support, leaning off the edge of your bed isn't comfortable. The gaming chair let's you put it where you want it and lets you sit back comfortably to play. Issue #1 solved. Issue #2 is sound. If you've got a room wired for surround sound, this is not an issue for you. But if you are in a bedroom, dorm room, whatever without fancy speakers, you miss out on all the surround sound effects built into todays video games. The high-end models of these rocker chairs have built-in speakers and sub-woofers, so they rock and rumble and bring the sounds of the game all around you -- much easier that buying a $1000 worth of tuners and speakers. In this guide, we'll see what to look for when buying a gaming chair, go over the major makers and models, and give you an idea of what you can expect to pay, along with the best places to buy (list of top selling gaming chairs here).

video game rocker chairs




Some of the leading names in gaming chairs include Pyramat game chairs, X-Rocker (makers of the Ace Bayou Sound chairs), Corbeau video game chairs, Repose, Elite Rockers, Lumisource, Comfort, and Zerk. While I haven't personally sat in all the chairs these guys make, I've tried a lot. I like the Pyramat chairs -- that's what we have at home. The folding models fold up to about half their normal size, and while they are not light (close to 50 lbs), you can still drag them over to the corner to get them out of the way. The cheapest gaming chairs you'll find are about $35-$50. These are generally low-end models that fold up, but they don't have and sound capabilities and may not be very strong or offer much support -- OK if you are just looking for something to put in an 8 year old's room. Expect to pay $75-$150 for a wireless sound rocker chair, like the Pyramat PM420W Wireless Deluxe Sound Rocker ($129) or the X Rocker Ace Bayou Sound Wireless X Cooper ($139, but also has a tilt and swivel base so gets you up off the floor). You'll also find super expensive chairs like the Playseats Evolution which are designed for driving simulator enthusiasts -- $200-$600, and more than most people need.

Movie Game Chairs and Lounger Game Chairs

Not just for gaming, a lot of these chairs are also designed for movie watching. Not everyone has a full surround sound setup in their family room, den, bedroom, or dormroom. That's where these movie chairs come in handy, allowing you to experience the Dolby audio found in todays DVDs and Blu-Ray Discs. They have built-in subwoofers inside, along with speakers near your head, so you not only hear but FEEL the shake and boom of explosions, music, etc. Add to the fact that these chairs are portable and can be easily moved from room to room, and you can begin to see why they are so popular with teens and young adults when it comes time to choosing furniture for their video/movie/computer lifestyles. Hooking these gaming chairs up to your DVD player or game system is usually pretty easy. You have a wireless transmitter that connects to the audio output jack on your system, so the signals are encoded and sent wirelessly to your chair where they then come out of the speakers. This doesn't happen by magic - you have to plug your chair into a power outlet to get the electricity to power the audio system, which means there is usually a cable running across the floor somewhere. Many video game rockers come with built-in batteries that will give you a couple hours of play time while unplugged - that way you can plug it in at night and unplug it and plop it in front of the TV for a few hours without worrying about cords and cables. So that's something to look for when buying a chair -- see if it is battery powered as well as plug-powered. You can also plug you iPod into these chairs, so a lot of kids use them like a boombox -- just kick back and enjoy the music. The same brands apply here - Pyramat, X Rocker, etc. So when buying a chair, also consider whether or not you need the sound features - you can save half the price by just getting a rocker vs. a sound rocker.