If you’re looking for a highly-adjustable affordable chair, the Modway Articulate Ergonomic Mesh Office chair is our top pick. The back is breathable mesh, and the seat is a thick, padded fabric. The lumbar area is very well-supported for the price although lot of the frame and parts are made from plastic, which may discourage some.
You can adjust the seat height, angle of pitch, and the angle of the back of the chair. You can also adjust the armrests vertically, but there’s not a lot of space between them. That’s fine if you’re strictly doing mixing work, but if you’re going to have musicians sitting in this chair, you’ll want to leave the armrests off when you assemble it.
Of all the chairs we reviewed, the Modway offers by far the best value for the money.
Not as large or as durable as the other chairs on this list, but it’s one of the most affordable. The SPACE Air Grid Mid-Back Swivel Chair is a good choice if you’re short on studio funds from blowing all your money on Beatport.
The SPACE Air Grid Mid-Back Swivel Chair is perfect for those looking for a budget ergonomic chair. The back is made of breathable mesh and provides plenty of lumbar support, but it isn’t very large. SubPac users might have trouble getting this to work for them, though. A lot of parts are made of plastic, so we’re also a bit concerned about durability.
The castors on this studio chair are only rated for carpets, not hardwood, so that may be something to consider. If money is tight, the Air Grid will get you up and running at a very low price, and it’s more ergonomic than most standard chairs.
3. Ergolab Stealth Studio Chair (Best Premium Option)
The ErgoLab Stealth Studio is a highly ergonomic chair that was designed specifically with producers and live engineers in mind. The adjustable seat gives you plenty of height, making it a prime choice for live sound and lighting engineers.
It’s relatively light, and the coating on the metal is specifically designed to absorb light, so it won’t reflect spotlights if you were to ever use it for live gigs. While it still provides plenty of lumbar support, it’s unfortunately too small to use a SubPac properly.
The seat can be tilted backwards and locked into place. On top of that, you can also slope it downwards/forwards to have your legs in a more natural position, to circumvent pressure on your back. The mesh seating also distributes pressure evenly across your glutes and hamstrings, which is ideal for improving circulation.
Oh, and you guitarists and bassists can rejoice, as the armrests are easily removable.
The back and seat are both made from a breathable mesh, and the frame is made from durable metal. You can get it in polished aluminum, satin aluminum, or a black powder coat. It also comes in three sizes.
This chair is impressively adjustable. You can change how far it will let you lean back, and how much sway there will be between the bottom and back of the chair when you do it. You can adjust the height and depth of the lumbar supports, the default angle of the back, the pitch of the seat, and the height, depth, and angle of the armrests.
The Argomax has more adjustment options than you’ll find on many premium chairs. This highly customizable chair provides great back support, and the armrests are relatively easy to keep out of the way.
If you’re wondering what the best recording studio chair that money can buy is, look to the Argomax. Argomax Ergonomic Mesh Chair is the closest you’ll get to the performance of the Aeron in a mid-priced chair. The mesh back is nice and high, with good lumbar support, and features a removable headrest. The seat itself is relatively thin cloth padding, with a plastic bottom. The frame is made of nylon and fiberglass. This makes it lightweight, but also less durable than metal-framed chairs.
There are plenty of available adjustments here. You can set the lumbar support’s height and depth with pinpoint accuracy, and there’s a single handle that lets you control both the height of the chair and the angle of the back to help eliminate back pain. One of the best features are the armrests which, while not completely removable, are adjustable which is really handy for ensuring you’re sat comfortably.
The Gabrylly Office Chair is one of the only chairs online which has continuously maintained fantastic ratings. It’s reasonably priced, and has a tall mesh back with a removable mesh headrest. The seat is also meshed, and the frame is made of two-tone aluminum.
The headrest, seat, and armrests are all adjustable, although this chair doesn’t provide as much lumbar support as some of the others on this list.
On the other hand, the armrests swing up and out of the way, so this is a great chair for those of you that want to be able to switch between ‘guitar mode’ or mixing mode.
The Hbada is a great recording studio chair that suits the needs of us music makers and looks great as well (it wouldn’t be out of place in these Star Wars themed studio spaces).
The ergonomic mesh back to the chair allows heat and humidity to pass through which is great if you’re in a small room (perhaps with analog gear) where it can get really hot, really quickly as well as being comfortable to minimize back pain.
The ”human curve” back and headrest also provide plenty of spinal support, with an adjustable back that can be set to work mode or full recline mode which is great for taking a short break in comfort. In fact, the Hbada does suggest that you could sleep in the reclining position, maybe not a necessity but it shows they’ve really put some thought into the comfort of this chair!
Considerations When Buying A Studio Chair
While gamers, writers, and anyone who sits for a long time will appreciate our list below, we’ve written this guide specifically with producers in mind. Here are a few things you’ll want to look for in a studio chair.
Armrests – Love Them Or Hate Them?
Here’s the thing about playing guitar while you’re sitting in a chair with armrests: they get in the way. Ever tried to pull off an octave bend into a whammy bar dive with two armrests obstructing both of your elbows? Yeah, not fun.
As a guitarist myself, I had a chair with armrests for quite a while and I learned to just live with it. I figured out that if I hunch and lean a certain way, I could avoid my elbows not being obstructed by the armrests.
I definitely paid the price over time as I’d get up from a long session and my ribs and back were sore from being in such an awkward position.
I’ve since invested in a producer chair that has removable arms, and it’s made a massive improvement in my seating posture and playing ability.
Anyway, this applies to anyone who plays tactile instruments while in a seated position. So, if you fall into that category, definitely consider an option that allows you to move/remove the armrests, or doesn’t include them at all.
Do You Use A SubPac?
If you use a SubPac tactile sound system, you’ll want to make sure your chair is going to accommodate it. While the SubPac M2 and M2x are small enough to work with almost all full backed chairs, the S2 is a bit larger and can be too tall for some shorter chairs.
Depending on the material the chair is made of, it will resonate at different frequencies. Because of this, you’ll probably need to tweak your SubPac’s settings when you get a new chair.
Since this article is designed for producers, we’ve ensured that most of the chairs in our list are SubPac compatible.
Look For Lumbar Support
For everyone in sedentary jobs, particularly us producers, lower back and spinal injuries are no joke. You may feel young and fit today, but over time, those minor sores you quickly recover from today can lead to more serious and complicated problems down the line.
A chair with good lumbar support will prevent you from slouching while you sit. This can go a long way towards improving your spinal health.
RSI (Repetitive Stress Injury) is also commonplace in producers. It occurs when you make a lot of repetitive movements – like clicking a mouse or using a game controller, or when you sit in a position that puts stress on your muscles. If your back hurts every day after being in the studio, or you can’t get out of bed in the morning without wincing, it’s time to take action by equipping yourself with the right chair, and even desk (check out our list of best studio desks for producers here).
Comfort stretches a lot further than simply how ‘plush’ or ‘soft’ a chair feels. Breathability is equally important, and a factor many producers fail to take into consideration when choosing the perfect chair for them.
If you’re more prone to sweating, you may want to consider a chair that uses breathable mesh material.
Leather may look classy, but for long mixing sessions during Summer, you’re not going to have a very comfortable experience.
Is It Height Adjustable?
It’s hard to find a chair that isn’t height-adjustable.
That being said, take a look at the quality of the mechanism. A good height adjuster will be made of metal, preferably thick metal. A plastic paddle on the end of the handle is fine, but if you see plastic gears, consider a higher quality model.