Whether it be for gaming, drawing, or working, I’ve been on the lookout for a comfortable chair that offers enough support to keep me going well into the early hours of the morning. Sometimes, you’ve just gotta get shit done, and if you don’t have the proper support you could actually end up with more than a bruised ego from hours of ranked competitive play. I used to be the type of gamer that would use a piece of tech until it collapsed in a sad, broken heap before I would shell out money on the newest trend to hit the market. In some ways, I’m still like that. I’m frugal with money, and unless I just desperately need something that could make my life easier and less painful, I’ll probably still wait until that item falls apart before I start to look at replacing it.
Enter the year of working from home, and my chair is officially falling apart. It’s kind of undeniable at this point, and it has to be bad if even my cat has started to avoid napping on it. With remote work comes video calls as well, and needing to keep up an air of professionalism. I can’t have a raggedy, torn chair in the background. So, we need something cheap, professional, and durable. Luckily, GTRacing just so happened to reach out to us with an offer to try one of their premium gaming chairs.
- Model: PRO Series // GT002-GRAYPRO
- Price: $169.99 (GTRacing Website, Amazon)
- Max Weight Capacity: 330 lbs
- Sturdy metal frame
- PU (Polyurethane) leather
- Smooth Class 4 KGS gas lift
- Recline: 90°-170°
- Plastic Armrests: Height adjustable
- 1-year limited warranty
Now, I’ve had plenty of chairs in the past, but I have yet to drive the ever-so-popular racing chair. However, I was pretty intrigued by the prospect of trying out a chair with a backrest that extended higher than the middle of my back. Many of the racing chairs available come in a variety of bright colors, with curious racing stripe patterns up and down the sides. Thankfully, GTRacing was willing to send over one of their sleeker models with a nice gray coloring, the GT002-GRAYPRO.
Since I moved into my new apartment, I’ve learned more about construction and assembly than I probably have in my entire life. Still, just the idea of having to piece a new chair together was kind of daunting. Unless Cinna (the cat) suddenly grew some thumbs to help me, I knew that I would be putting this monster together on my own. To my surprise, everything about the assembly was both pain and hassle-free.
The box it arrived in held up remarkably well against the beating that the UPS man delivered. I was worried initially, thinking that a few gashes and holes might have meant the loss of some critical pieces, but everything was tucked away and packaged carefully to ensure that wasn’t the case. A simple, glossy, colored brochure depicted every step clearly, with effective illustrations. As someone that writes instructions for a living, this was so nice to see. The easier you make a process on the customer, the less problems you’re going to have for the support team.
A certain article that stood out to me during the assembly process was how well all of the items were designed to connect together. The backrest was pretty sturdy after it had been anchored to the seat frame and armrests. No wiggling around at all. Kudos to the design folks for putting holes in all the right places. Thanks to the well-organized packaging and excellent instructions, I was ready to take the Pro Series chair for a 360° spin in less than thirty minutes.
Quality and Material
As you probably noticed in both the pictures and the specifications list, this particular Pro Series chair was upholstered with PU leather and plastic coverings. I’ve heard that racing chairs tend to get hotter around the lower lumbar area because of this material. I actually get hot pretty easily myself, but I have yet to experience any temperature-related discomfort.
The bottom seat cushion is also a fantastic width for those of us that were cursed with bigger hips. The edges of the cushion don’t hug my sides tightly at all, and even have a little bit of wiggle room. While the material doesn’t have that luxurious feel that I would have hoped a $169.99 chair would have, it doesn’t necessarily feel bad. It just feels satisfactory. But again, that’s just me. I’m frugal.
The one feature I’m not extremely impressed with is the plastic armrests. I’m a tall gal with a long torso, so I would have preferred that the armrests extended up just a bit higher. While I’m glad that the armrests are adjustable, they still don’t work well for me. Right now, I hardly use them because they don’t quite meet my elbows when I’m gaming. And, I’m pretty sure that mine might be slightly uneven at maximum height. Coupled with the lack of any cushion or padding, they just don’t do anything for me.
The hefty metal frame adds a lot of structure to the entirety of the chair. When paired with the smooth casters, it’s nice not to have to worry about tipping over when you slide your chair back due to the poor weight distribution. Am I the only one that’s happened to? Probably. I tend to be somewhat accident-prone.
A feature I wasn’t expecting to love so much is the class 4 hydraulics. That component is smooooth. Not only is it silent, but the gas lift lets you down slowly, almost like you’re sliding through molasses. Have you ever been on that ride at the fair, Big Ben? The one where it takes you all the way up and slams you back down immediately to give you the heart attack of a lifetime? I’ve had office chairs do that to me, so frequently in fact, that I think they might have instilled a slight sense of fear everytime I turn a decompression lever. The gas lift is actually so smooth, that I had to look down at first to make sure that I was moving.
Earn Your Stripes
A core feature of racing chairs in general seems to be their inclusion of the detachable straps that hold your headrest and lumbar cushion in place.Because of their position, I thought they would be relatively easy to adjust, but remember when I talked about how well everything was fit together? Well, the backrest is fitted so tightly to the bottom cushion that you have to stand up to adjust the cushions.
This also, unfortunately, applies to adding and removing the cushions. The buckles that secure around the chair require a little pressure to push through the seat gap, which just seems like a lot of unnecessary work. I was under the impression that you could just slide the cushions up and down at will without much elbow grease. Maybe I’m just too good at assembly and tightened everything up too much.
If it proves to be too much stress, you could just leave the cushions off, but I think half of the fun of a racing chair is utilizing the support cushions and adjusting them to fit your personal needs.
12 Hours Later
At the end of my usual work day, I was able to transition seamlessly into gaming without much thought. Usually, I would have noticed a twinge of pain in my lower back or some strain on my neck, but the Pro Series chair did a fantastic job of keeping my spine aligned so that I could remain focused on the task at hand.
Before I jumped into an evening of raiding, I did try out the 90°-170° recline and was thoroughly impressed once again with the heft and quality of the metal frame. I tilted the chair all the way back to 170° to make sure it could hold me comfortably and was not disappointed. I felt both supported and secure, and was able to provide a little extra relief to my back after a long day. I can definitely see myself using the reclining feature to kick back and watch horror movies or enjoy a relaxing game with a USB controller.
I found the Pro Series GT002-GRAY to be a solid choice for folks that spend several hours sitting in the same chair. While I may be a little frugal, you’re honestly getting many more great features packed into the price of this chair than you would with any mesh office chair at the same price. There was definitely a lot of care put into the packaging and construction of the Pro Series chair, which I definitely appreciate, with just a few slip ups with respect to the adjustable armrests and headrests. For someone as tall or taller than me (5’9), I don’t feel like they would get much enjoyment out of the armrest height adjustment. It’s just a bit too short for my taste.
Despite its shortcomings, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my gaming time these past two weeks in the Pro Series 2020 gaming chair. It has held up through some long, tiresome days and helped give me the support I needed when transitioning from work to play. It always feels so much more meaningful and worth your time when a company puts actual thought into their product instead of just churning out cheap copies to make a quick buck. Your time is precious. Why shouldn’t you spend it in comfort? If you’d like to look at GTRacing’s current stock of gaming chairs for yourself, you can find them over at gtracing.com.
The product discussed in this article was provided by the manufacturer for evaluation purposes.