Thanks for coming by and checking out this chair review. Alex from noblechairs hooked me up with a sample of their ICON Series Leather Chair in Midnight Blue and Graphite making this review possible. First I’ll share pictures I took of the box and contents. Then I’ll be talking about my experience using the chair for 2 weeks and after that you’ll find our scores for the chair based on our 1 to 10 point system.
A nearly 70 pound chair will test your back. Lift with the legs! Sliding across the floor is also a great strategy.
What’s in the Box
- Assembly Manual
- Neck Pillow
- Lumbar Pillow
- Wheel Base
- Chair Seat
- Tilt Mechanism
- Hardware Box
In the Trenches: Two Weeks with the ICON Series Real Leather Chair
The ICON chair is unique to other chairs we’ve reviewed in that it employs a genuine leather upholstery. When placed side-by-side to a bonded leather chair (synthetic) the contrast is striking. I’ve always appreciated the feel of authentic leather. Furthermore, I generally run cooler when I’m gaming or working, so the fact that the leather heats up is a bonus. For those who run warm, I’d suggest considering a chair that incorporates a mesh material in its design. If extra warmth doesn’t dissuade you — and the ICON tickles your fancy — the big decision you’ll have to make is between the genuine and faux leather. There’s about a $200 price disparity there.
The ICON genuine leather is offered in three styles: cognac & black, all black, and the midnight blue & graphite reviewed here. The faux leather version is offered in all black with a choice of 5 colors for the stitching and accents.
Assembly wasn’t a drag (but I would chug down a coffee or energy drink before starting for best results). Much thanks goes out to the large assembly instructions manual noblechairs included. The step-by-step pictures are large, detailed, and clear. With 14 steps, it took me around 30-45 minutes to fully assemble. The only step that I got hung up on was the last one, which instructed me to attach the lumbar pillow by feeding its two elastic bands through the back of the chair and over the shoulders of the chair then locking into place. Unfortunately, there were no elastic bands on the lumbar pillow, so these instructions may have been for their Epic Series chair. There may have been a mix up or perhaps they didn’t bother creating a unique set of instructions for the chair. The last couple pages of the manual include tips on adjusting the chair as well as caring for the chair and the leather upholstery.
Build Quality (8.5/10)
Of course, the big win here is the genuine leather and it makes a huge difference. The durability, look, and feel is unmatched by PU leather products. noblechair recommends keeping the chair away from direct sunlight and heat sources to protect the leather from fading and to increase its longevity. The quilting pattern zig-zagging its way around the seat and back rest is well executed and while some may think it gives the chair a dated look, I think it a nice flourish. The armrests look and feel high quality. Even one of the adjustment buttons for the 4D armrests is made of a durable metal and sits flush within the design. Most all of the chairs levers and knobs adjusts with a satisfying smoothness that is testament to the chair’s craftsmanship.
Noble really could ditch the “bonus” pillows that they include with it. They are a velour fabric covering rather cheap foam inserts with some branding on them. Honestly I don’t think they vibe with the chair as a whole. This is the second time I’ve gotten a higher priced gaming chair with these silly pillows included, that don’t match the look or quality of the chair. I’ll probably just give them away. The lumbar pillow came without any straps and every time I got up from the chair it would just fall forward and need repositioned Though the neck pillow is marginally better, as it does indeed have a strap that keeps in glued in place, I still think it cheapens the overall look (I’ll be leaving the pillows out of the “Look” category score, because they are not integrated into the chair design).
My biggest complaint about the armrests is that they aren’t padded. In fact, when comparing them to the other chairs we have recently done in depth reviews on, they are the most firm. This might end up making them more durable, and less prone to losing their shape overtime. However, if you’re going to go so far to make big sturdy 4D armrests a little more comfort for the elbows wouldn’t hurt.
The ICON Series chair has all the trimmings one would come to expect from a chair in its price range: recline mode, 4D armrests, tilt lock mechanism, set tension knob, and height adjustment. You can also adjust the width of the armrests by loosing/tightening the screws underneath the seat with the included allen key. The height range is really on point. It’s comfortable for me at an average height of 6’0” and just low enough for Ray, our 5’3” content manager to sit in on it’s lowest setting. We’d gander it would comfortably sit someone that’s up to 6’5”— which is impeccable range for a gaming chair catering to most all shapes and sizes. I think one area for improvement would be lumbar support. Either a backrest cushion that better integrates with the chair and denser foam or an adjustment knob like the one Secretlab’s chair features would be a step in the right direction.
The first thing that comes to mind when you look at it is quality. Especially when you have other (less expensive) gaming chairs nearby to compare it to. Nevertheless, I think the ICON Series in its own right could hold ground against the likes of premium chairs from Steelcase and Herman Miller. The chair is absolutely gorgeous from the quilting pattern on the chair back and seat to the midnight blue (a greyish blue) finish on the leather. The color is unique, it looks grey in darker settings, but the blue is strong in the daylight or fluorescent lighting. I don’t think I’ve ever seen leather furniture with this color, but it was a smart choice for the chair.
The metal accents on the arms, embossed leather on the head of the chair, tight faultless stitching on the seams, and sturdy metal base are nice compliments to the leather. In particular I like the embossed logo because it isn’t going to wear out or fray like a sewn logo naturally will over time. The plastic logo plate located under the embossed logo on the back rest was a little scuffed up (maybe happened in shipping). I think a brushed metal plate would have completed the look better. The neck and lumbar pillows don’t look awful, but I do think they diminish the appeal of the chair. A shame, as this chair was very close to receiving the golden 10 out of 10.
The $200 price premium noblechairs charges for their genuine leather models is tough to stomach. Any time I’m going to drop over $500 on something I try to sleep on it and really weigh whether it’s worth that many groceries, Taco Bell trips, etc. Many of us spend a great deal of time in our chairs so it’s easier to make a case for spending a lot of money on one. I think most of the ergonomic and comforts this chair offers can be found in a $300 model. That extra $250 or so is really going toward a better looking chair and arguably one that’s going to last longer.
Zoom In: Specs
- Upholstery: Genuine Leather
- Casters: 60mm nylon & polyurethane casters for soft & hard floors
- Armrests: 4D ‘soft’ PU cushioning
- Weight: 64 pounds (29kg)
- Weight Capacity: 330 pounds (150kg)
- Recommended Height: 5′ 7″ – 6′ 4″
- Wheelbase: Reinforced Aluminum
- Frame: Steel
- Internal: Cold cured high density foam
- Pillows: Neck + lumbar
- Reclines from 90 to 135 degrees
- 2 year warranty
- Safety class 4 gas lift
- Tilting mechanism up to 11 degrees
For a comprehensive list of specifications see here.
Zoom Out: Summary
The ICON is a beautiful chair with genuine leather in a unique midnight blue color. noblechairs charges a high premium for their real leather chairs (about $200 more than their faux leather models). If you love the feel of real leather, you’ll be hard pressed to find a chair that tops this one.
For more PC gaming chairs check out our comprehensive list.