There are a lot of sports cars on the road. For the mid-life crisis on a budget, you’ve got the relatively affordable Ford Mustang or Mazda Miata. But every car enthusiast holds at least one particular sports car in their heart. You know, the one that they’d happily pay a hefty sum just to drive for a day. I’m talking the Bugatti Veyrons, the Lamborghinis, and the Ferraris.
This past week I had the pleasure of test driving one of the top-tier gaming chairs on the market. One so iconic (and expensive), it’s something of a lofty dream for everyday gamers. The Ferrari of fragging, if you will.
Allow me to introduce you to the noblechairs HERO.
Zoom In: Specs
- 21.5″ W x 54″ H
- 66 pounds
- 330 maximum weight capacity
- Recline: 45°
- Steel frame, cold foam, and PU leather
- Aluminum base
- Safety Class 4 gas lift
- Quiet 60mm casters
- 2-year manufacturer warranty
Building a Better Gaming Experience
From the word “go,” the HERO is full throttle. Assembly is three-pages easy. They suggest at the outset to have two people on hand for assembly — and while I did borrow the photographer’s hands a time or two, I could have made do by bracing on something as well. The chair, seat, and base are heavy, and the chief source of unwieldiness during the build. But it’s this very same weight that attests to the build quality.
Included is a combo Allen wrench and Phillips screwdriver, and it’s the only tool you’ll need to get it all together. Everything that should be tightened down finds its home in a hurry, and everything that snaps into place does so without protest. The whole build took less than thirty minutes, and that’s including time spent posing parts for photos.
After making sure everything was fastened down tight, I rolled the HERO up to my desk. The smooth 60mm casters glided over like a bird on the hunt: strong, swift, and noble. It was time to put the HERO through the paces.
Time for Some Thrilling Heroics
The noblechairs’ HERO is the poster child of the lap of luxury. Now, that doesn’t mean it’s perfect, and we’ll get to that. But as it stands, it’s head and shoulders above the crowd.
The seat is wide and comfortable. Simple as that. It’s a bit firm at first, subject to a breaking in period. Same with the backrest and the velvety pillows included with the chair. My first few days with the chair, I noticed a bit of lower back pain, which made me wonder whether the lumbar pillow was a good idea after all. But then it cleared up, and I’ve come to believe that it was merely my back adjusting to correct posture for the first time in years.
Quick disclaimer: I’m not saying the HERO is going to clear up any back problems you may have. But it’s hard to slouch when you’re sitting in it right. And even without the lumbar pillow, it’s still back-friendly.
The armrests are advertised as being “4D.” That’s just a fancy way to say “they move in all directions.” You can raise and lower them, of course, but you can also slide them from side to side as well as forward and back. Position them perfectly for your gaming setup, whether you’ve got a broad stance or narrow.
This brings me to one of my major complaints, though. The armrests don’t really have a lot of give. When the rest of the chair is so comfortable, armrests as hard as an unripe mango raise a few questions. Chiefly “why?” It’s forgivable but can result in sore elbows. Fortunately, raising the armrests to desk level can help distribute the weight more evenly.
The materials leave nothing to be desired. The HERO I’m reviewing is the PU-Leather model. In the past, I had come to associate PU-Leather with a plasticky, vinyl feel. Not so with the HERO — if I had been told it was real leather, I would have believed it. The stitching is durable and heavy-duty, and the frame is solid metal. As for plastic components? Those are limited to covers for other metal components, like the leavers beneath the seat, wheels, and armrests.
The base frame is solid aluminum. Rolling around is a breeze, even on carpet. The reclining function is fantastic, with no looseness or play in the backrest. And the headrest is memory foam, meaning that even without the pillow, you won’t end up with a headache.
Now that we’ve looked under the hood, let’s take the chair for a spin around the track.
Lapping the Competition
I work at my desk. I play at my desk. Thus is the life of a freelancer. But that means I spend more than half my waking hours in a chair. My chair has got to go the extra mile.
And that’s precisely what the HERO does. It’s pricey to be sure, but it looks and feels as luxurious as the price suggests.
Would you believe that I only started playing World of Warcraft late last year? It was September — jumping on the WoW Classic hype train with a few friends to relive an experience I never had. I’ve moved on to Retail WoW now. And fortunately, I’ve also moved on to the HERO. Awkwardly folding my legs or leaning back to prop them up on the desk is a thing of the past. Now I’ve got both feet on the ground through every long gaming session. And it feels good.
I’ve even taken to watching movies and shows at my computer again. I hadn’t even considered how the comfort of my chair might affect that, but I’ve never been a fan of Prime Video at my desk. But I watched the premiere of Star Trek: Picard from the HERO (OK, I might have propped my legs up for that). As I write this, I’m looking forward to firing up The World’s End on my second monitor. It’s a strange sort of thing to note, but the chair’s comfort has literally changed the way I use my computer. Now I run the risk of spending even more time behind my desk.
Sure there are a few sticking points. No chair is perfect. But overall, the noblechairs’ HERO delivers. I can easily recommend it to anyone — like myself — who needs a big chair that’s big on comfort.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got a movie to finish.
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Zoom Out: Verdict
Value - 9/10
Comfort - 9/10
Features - 9/10
The noblechairs HERO does almost everything right. Power users may notice an adjustment period, and the armrests could be better, but overall the experience is top shelf. It’s a pricy chair to be sure, but it never feels like you were shortchanged.
- Straightforward, easy assembly
- Large seat and backrest
- High quality materials
- Elegant and sturdy design
- 4D armrests
- Easy rolling, even on carpet
- Poor armrest padding
- Break-in period
- Premium price