When it comes to desk chairs, you typically have two options: spend over $500 or get a featureless right angle. Have a seat, we’re about to tell you how Autonomous is changing all that.
The ErgoChair retails for $249 in seven different color combinations, and from a distance, it’s indistinguishable from products multiple times its price. Almost all of the points of adjustability you expect are present and accounted for here, from movable lumbar support to tweak-able tilt tension to headrest height.
Back in 2012, the IKEA Markus, a $200 chair with zero features, was the only affordable option in Lifehacker’s reader vote, and the same results played out in 2014 on Kotaku. An underrated Lifehacker article from 2013 recommended the only other good sub-$300 desk chair I’ve found, the Tempur-Pedic T9000, which I’ve owned and loved since 2013. It typically goes for more than the ErgoChair, with better build quality but fewer features.
The ErgoChair is very comfortable and supportive, and really great for leaning back in with that headrest. The back of the chair allows for airflow, adjustments are easy, and the cushion is more than serviceable. The only place you’ll really be reminded you got this chair on a budget are the armrests, which while totally useable, feel cheap to the touch. Simply put, it’s the best value in desk chairs.
The ErgoChair was a Kickstarter project, so of course there’s controversy.
Autonomous’ Kickstarter campaign was suspended without explanation, and speculation is that Autonomous is simply reselling a Chinese (or possibly Vietnamese) product as something new. We ran into a similar problem with Marie + Merrill Cookware, but since the ErgoChair is already shipping, we’re really not concerned in this case.