I often pass up gaming chair review opportunities, as I generally find them too over-the-top aesthetically. However, when my colleague Sam asked the team if anyone would be interested in reviewing a velvet gaming chair, my interest was piqued immediately. Fast forward a few weeks, and here I sit in one of the most comfortable gaming/office chairs, the Quersus ICOS, writing this review.
What makes the Quersus ICOS one of the best gaming chairs isn't its velvetiness, though. If anything, the unique fabric might deter people, especially if you're of a sweaty kind. No, the Quersus ICOS is a top-tier chair because it's ergonomic, looks swell, and actually looks kind of like a juiced-up office chair, which, in this context, is a good thing.
Read my full Quersus ICOS review below to find out why everyone should consider this chair as their next gaming room upgrade.
Quersus ICOS review
Quersus ICOS review: price and availability
New for 2023, the updated ICOS chair is available to buy directly from Quersus for a recommended retail price of €699 (approx. £610/ $743/ AU$ 1,155). This is for the ICOS 1.2 chair, which has a hydrophobic and animal-friendly fabric finish. Quersus currently only ships with the EU (and the UK) within 3-5 working days from receipt of payment.
At the time of writing this review, the ICOS 1.2 chair was on offer, selling for only €549 (approx. £479/ $584/ AU$ 907).
The whacky colourways include Beige Rabbit, Pink Flamingo, Silver Cat, Grey Mouse, Yellow Canary, Black Panther, Blue Parrot and Brown Dog.
Quersus ICOS review: specifications
- Max load: 150 kg
- Weight: 27 kg
- Height: 129-139 cm
- Upholstery: Hydrophobic and animal-friendly fabric - PFV (Pet-Friendly Velvet)
- Armrests: 4D (adjustable in 4 directions)
- Hydraulics: MS (Maximus Synchro) mechanism
- Recline: 0-140°
- Foam: QRS cold-cure foam (55 kg/ m3 density)
- Warranty: 5 years
Quersus ICOS review: packaging and setup
The Quersus ICOS comes in what surely is one of the most nicely packed boxes I've ever seen. While it certainly appeals to my OCD, the well-thought-out packaging also reduces waste and is better for the environment, as the smaller parcel produces less CO2 during shipping. And, yes, it's pretty satisfying to look at and unpack.
Once you open the box, you're presented with a huge card that shows the assembled chair – probably to whet your appetite even more. Flip the card over, and you'll be presented with simple yet easy-to-understand instructions on how to build your new chair. The sheet is pretty straightforward, and thanks to the aforementioned packing system, it's almost impossible to get stuck with the assembly.
Especially since even the tools and the nuts and bolts required are neatly packed into a smaller box. Usually, I have to get my own screwdrivers and pliers when assembling furniture, and with many years of IKEA purchases, I know that you need your own tools if you want the most effortless experience. Here, I didn't have to touch any of my old tools; better still, I was so impressed with the multitool provided by Quersus that it might make the upgrade to my regular toolbox.
The only minor issue I had when putting the chair together was when I reached the second polystyrene layer, I realised the arms of the chairs were tucked under almost all the layers. The only way to get them out of the box was to tip it over, which spoiled my perfect unboxing/building experience.
The Quersus ICOS is relatively heavy at 27 kg, and there is one point, when the chair is half assembled, where it would be ideal if someone could hold the thing while you tighten the screws. Otherwise, I'd say if you've ever put together IKEA furniture, you shouldn't have any issues assembling your new Quersus ICOS.
Quersus ICOS review: features and perfomance
Considering the compact box it comes in, I was slightly surprised by the size of the Quersus ICOS. It commands my small home office, which makes me glad I didn't order it in one of the whackier colourways, like Pink Flamingo or Yellow Canary. I went with the terribly named Brown Dog model, which, in reality, is a softer brown that has just enough going for it without completely taking over the room.
The other reason I went with this colour is because it's one of the ICOS 1.2 options, one that features a water-repellent and animal-friendly fabric cover. It's soft but feels resilient enough to withstand some manhandling. Plus, the velvety finish helps stains and liquids roll off the chair more easily. And, you know, it's vervet, so it looks pretty swanky, too.
The first thing you'll notice when you sit down on the Quersus ICOS is the firmness of the QRS cold-cure foam. It's not like trying to perch on a plank, but the foam has a 55 kg/ m3 density, which you'll feel when you apply your weight to the chair. It's by no means uncomfortable, just to clarify, and the denser-than-usual construction also helps longevity.
As for adjustability, the Quersus ICOS is well-equipped to help you find the best setup. The armrests are adjustable in 4 directions, and the chair allows for an up to 140° recline. Better still, the MS (Maximus Synchro) mechanism lets you recline more ergonomically by moving the seat and the backrest to a different degree.
To explain, unlike cheap gaming and office chairs that pivot the whole seat when you lean back, the Quersus ICOS' seat slides back while the backrest tilts. This lets you maintain your balance, thanks to your feet not leaving the ground during recline. The motion itself requires a bit of a push on your part, so it's unlikely you'd accidentally fall back.
The large headrest is a nice touch, perfect for people with large heads, such as myself. The backrest, much like the seat, is firm but comfortable and cradles my back just right. The level of lumbar support is sadly not adjustable, so if you need a chair that literally digs into your lower back, the Quersus ICOS isn't the one for you.
Otherwise, Quersus ICOS is a superb gaming seat that doubles as an office chair. Based on my experience, your back and underside will feel fresh as a daisy even after hours of sitting around. (Although I'd recommend getting up at least a little bit at least once every hour, really.)
Quersus ICOS review: verdict
The two features that attracted me to the Quersus ICOS were the colour options and the velvetiness of the fabric, but what made me stay were the premium feel and the superb ergonomics office/gaming chair. I love it when products dare to be versatile enough to offer more than one functionality, and the ICOS does this perfectly.
The firmness of the foam is an acquired taste, but you'll be rewarded with long-term comfort and durability. And while some might think that the velvet finish would make you sweaty, here in the UK, where the temperature is around 10-12 degrees Celsius all year around, you certainly won't have that issue.
All in all, the Quersus ICOS is a superb chair with very few niggles that are more than forgivable. Certainly recommended for those who dare to be different and need a comfortable office chair for gaming, streaming or general computer work.
Quersus ICOS review: also consider
A worthy alternative would be our number one choice of gaming chairs, the Titan Evo. SecretLab has rolled its existing Titan and Omega chairs together into a single offering that delivers the best of both while also evolving the gaming chair product in a bunch of small but smart and refined ways. Read Rob's exquisite SecretLab Titan Evo review.
Another softer option would be Secretlab's Titan Evo SoftWeave Plus. Partner the upholstery with the best gaming chair design on the market in terms of the Titan Evo, as well as best-in-class customisation options, and you've got the best fabric-covered gaming chair in the world. Read the Secretlab Titan Evo SoftWeave Plus review, also by the mighty Rob.