When it comes to choosing one media chair over another, there are three main criteria:
- Stereo or surround sound
- Primary use
If you just want stereo sound, you're in luck. Stereo sound can be found on the lower-priced systems like the Boom Chair, the Pyramat and the Sound Rocker. One mid-price system, the Ultimate Game Chair, also comes with stereo sound. If you're looking for a surround sound experience, you will have to pay more. The least-expensive chair that includes surround sound is the HotSeat Solo.
Next, you need to decide how you will be using your media chair most of the time. If it will be mainly used as a gaming chair, and you just want the subwoofer to give you some rumbling, then low-cost chairs like the Sound Rocker or Boom Chair will serve your purpose. For gamers with more ambitious plans, HotSeat offers several different options. The HotSeat Racer, which includes mounts for pedals and a steering wheel, is perfect for racing game players. Their most expensive option is the HotSeat PC Gamer, which includes mounted tables for a keyboard and monitor. All HotSeat chairs include surround sound.
Gamers who want some serious rumble will want to check out the Ultimate Game Chair, which features 14 "vibration motors" to shake and rattle in time with explosions, gun shots and tackles. Someone looking for a movie theater experience will want a chair that can accept digital inputs for use with high-end audio/visual devices. Surround sound is needed for this kind of setup as well. Both the Spherex RX2 and the Powerplay 5.1 Pro Media Chair offer these features. The Pro Media Chair incorporates the ButtKicker, a "silent subwoofer" designed to let you feel the vibration. You can also purchase ButtKickers by themselves.
For most buyers, the biggest factor in choosing a media chair is price. Pyramats sell for as little as $90, while Spherex RX2 chairs can go for $1,600. Your budget will determine where you fall within that range. In the media chair market, brand names don't mean too much, so higher prices generally reflect better components, more features and better audio equipment.
For lots more information on media chairs, check out the links on the next page.