AmazonBasics Faux Leather Mid-Back Office Chair
The AmazonBasics Mid-Back Office Chair is a smart-looking chair available for an extremely affordable price. This leads me to wonder – if a chair looks much more expensive than it actually is, what’s the catch? I spent some time researching the specifications and features of the AmazonBasics as well as reviews based on consumers’ actual experiences with this chair. What follows is my attempt to understand if the AmazonBasics Office Chair is the deal of a life time, a decent find, or a waste of your time.
First, let’s take a look at some basic facts. The cushion-style seat and back rest of this chair appear to be covered in leather and the chair is even marketed as leather. Further investigation revealed that the cushion covers are actually made from some sort of polyester or vinyl, designed to look like leather. Nonetheless, the detailed stitch work and believable faux leather are likely to impress someone looking for a low-cost executive-style chair, or someone who is conscious about the use of leather products.
This chair’s seat is adjustable in height from 16-inches to 21-inches. This range of 5 inches is likely to accommodate desks of many regular heights. Remember, you always want to adjust your seat’s height to match your desk’s height, not your leg length. If your desk is tall enough that your feet do not touch the floor once you adjust your seat’s height, invest in a small foot stool to create a proper ergonomic environment. The seat is also adjustable in angle. You can tilt it forward when writing and typing or backward when listening, talking or resting. You can even adjust the tensioner knob below the seat to either lock it at one angle or allow yourself to rock back and forth.
The back rest for this chair features slight lumbar support, in that the cushioning is thicker around the area of the lumbar spine. The back rest is not adjustable, as it is held in place by the arm rests. You cannot lean the back rest backward, pull it forward, or adjust it in height.
The arm rests of the Mid-Back Office Chair are what I like to refer to as ‘static.’ Serving the function of supporting your arms while simultaneously holding the back rest and seat together, these arm rests are not adjustable whatsoever. Unlike the arm rests of some chairs, these are not able to be adjusted inward, outward, or in height.
Aggravating Arm Rests
Let’s begin with the level of adjustments these arm rests will accommodate. Oh, that’s right, they are not adjustable at all. Arm rests should be adjustable so that, when you let your arms hang beside you with your elbows bent at 90-degree angles, the undersides of your forearms are just barely touching the arm rests. Also, you should be able to adjust your arm rests closer to or further away from your body, depending upon how well you fit within the space between them.
If the arm rests are too high, you will place a strain on your shoulders and neck as you sit scrunched up all day. If arm rests are too close to your body, you will feel squished and have a difficult time finding a comfortable position. If they are too low or too far away from your body, they will promote leaning. Leaning bends your spine in an unnatural way; leaning for extended periods of time can not only lead to back pain but can actually damage your spine.
Another aggravation built into these arm rests is their inability to be adjusted in height, flip up and out of the way, or be removed from the chair. It is important to be able to pull your chair beneath your desk, so that you are not leaning forward and placing strain on your neck or unnaturally curving your back. The arm rests on this chair are high enough that it you will not likely be able to slide it underneath a desk.
Is It As Comfortable As It Looks?
This question was begging to be answered: Is the AmazonBasics Mid-Back Office Chair as comfortable as it looks? It certainly looks comfortable with its plush seat, puffy back rest, and padded arm rests. Unfortunately, an overwhelming number of consumer reviews have revealed that the apparently plush cushions flatten out very quickly and become painful to sit on.
If you are looking for the appearance of luxury and are operating on a very strict budget, the Mid-Back Office Chair may be a good choice for you. It is certainly affordable, and has a luxurious appeal. Regrettably, its appearance seems to be all that this chair has going for it. Unless you happen to be the exact right fit for its non-adjustable frame, you are not likely to find comfort in this chair.