The NeueChair looks much like any other stylish office chair. However, this chair comes from a different pedigree. Rather than being the outcome of some office furniture firm, the NeueChair is made by the same people that create one of the best gaming chairs on the market: Secretlab. So does that mastery in gaming transfer to the corporate world? I took on some serious sitting time to find out.
The Secretlab Titan Evo chair remains our top pick for gamers thanks to its ergonomics, support and range of finishes. It’s a chair that you can sit in all day and still be comfortable, which is vitally important for long gaming sessions. The best office chairs have slightly different use cases, but they still need to provide comfort for long periods of time.
I have previously advised those looking for home office chairs to consider a gaming chair instead. Gaming chairs can be quite bulky though, so often a proper office chair is more suited to smaller spaces – or actually in an office.
Price and availability
You can buy the NeueChair direct through the SecretLab website. The list price for the standard chair is £574 / AU$1229, though at time of writing it was £534 / AU$919 with discount. The premium Obsidian model is listed for £674 / AU$1329 and currently available for £634 / AU$959. In the US, you can buy direct from the NeueChair website for $729/$829.
The chair comes with an impressive 12-year warranty for the frame, plus five years for the lumbar support and central mechanism, and three years for the armrest and caster mechanisms and the gas lift. While this doesn't cover the mesh fabric, it does cover the most expensive parts of the chair.
Design and features
The NeueChair looks every bit the office chair – though a high-end one. There was no mistaking this for one of the standard chairs that normally grace the T3 office desks. Though it does look similar at first glance to other ergonomic chairs. The seat, back and arms are finished in black, while the back frame and legs are polished aluminium. A premium version of the Neue chair features obsidian-coloured plating over the aluminium for extra durability and a sleeker look, but the standard silver is still classy.
It’s that back frame that provides most of the chair’s ergonomics, including the lumbar support height and depth adjustment. With a button on the side you can lengthen or shorten the seat depth, sliding the seat back and forward. The recline can be locked or released with a lever under the left arm, while the lever under the right arm controls the height. There’s a crank handle that turns to increase or decrease the tension of the recline under the right of the seat too. Armrests pull up for height adjustment and then lock in place, and are lowered by fully extending them first. They can also pivot in and out.
Some of the placement of these controls seems a little unusual, even after using Secretlab chairs, especially the recline and height adjustment. Once you know where everything is though, it’s all straightforward.
The chair sits on five large 65cm caster wheels to provide easy movement, while the fabric used on the seat and the back is a special three-layer mesh that combines polyester fibre and DuPont yarn. This gives a slight see-through effect to the chair and makes it lighter than a padded chair in the process.
Though the NeueChair does require some assembly, it’s a very simple process and only has four main parts to it. The main seat comes pre-assembled with the arms and back already attached. All you need to do is attach the caster wheels to the wheelbase or legs, slot in the hydraulic piston pole and place the seat on the top.
The whole assembly process from opening the box to being sat on the seat took me less than 15 minutes and didn’t involve any tools. This does make a change from some chairs I’ve put together, and was certainly a relief.
The assembly instructions that come in the box also include the adjustment instructions in large print on the back. As mentioned before, this is actually quite useful, as the position of controls is slightly different to those on other chairs. All of the adjustments can be made while sitting in the chair, though the lumbar height requires you to reach your arms round to the back of the chair, so is easier to do while standing.
I would have preferred to see some form of trigger button to help move the arms up and down, rather than just pulling them up. This is because when you extend them fully, they don’t lock in. Instead, you need to pull them up slowly to the last click (six clicks in total) for full extension. Most probably won’t want them that high anyway, and I kept the arms at their lowest setting most of the time.
Otherwise the chair is really easy to adjust, and once you have it set up, you don’t need to change much anyway. With the chair fully set up, it is very comfy to sit on – and even straight out of the box, to be fair. The lumbar support does help, especially if you get it lined up in the right part of your back, and I love being able to adjust the tension in the recline, so it retains a little bit of movement, rather than being stuck solid.
For my review I also added the optional head rest, which attaches to the frame of the seat with a couple of screws. While I don’t feel the headrest added much for me, if you are used to leaning back on your chair, it is a nice addition – and it makes the chair look more complete.
While the NeueChair is certainly a premium-priced office chair, it does a lot for the money. It also comes in at a similar price to its SecretLab gaming chairs. You can certainly find cheaper options but not many with this level of adjustments and comfort.
Given the choice for the home, I’d still opt for a gaming chair. However, if you need something less bulky and aesthetically pleasing, I would definitely recommend the NeueChair. Not only does this chair look incredibly stylish, but it’s very comfortable to sit on for long periods of time, and the adjustments let you fine tune it for the best support.
If you want a chair that offers comfort and style, the SecretLab Titan Evo in black SoftWeave Plus fabric is the least gamer-looking gaming chair and is super comfortable for all-day use. It costs a little less than the NeueChair, though is much bigger and bulkier making it tricky for smaller spaces.
For an ergonomic chair at a cheaper price, the Boulies EP200 is a decent option too. For around half the price of the NeueChair, you still get a great looking chair with plenty of adjustments, however the build quality is notably lower.