Today, I’m sharing with you a complete test for the ErgoChair 2 office chair made by Autonomous. I might as well tell you right away, my expectations were high for this chair at $399, presented as “One of the most ergonomic office chairs” on the brand’s website. To be perfectly honest, I have rarely had the opportunity to try chairs in this price range. Before setting it up, I didn’t really see what it could do better than the competition… So what’s the bottom line? Did the ErgoChair 2 disappoint? Is it really worth the price? I’ll tell you everything in this article.
Receiving the package and putting the chair together
Before I could sit on the ErgoChair 2, I had to receive the package and assemble it. As soon as the box arrived, I understood that this office chair was not quite like the others…
A heavy chair!
Let’s be honest: when it arrived, the ErgoChair 2 from Autonomous scared me. I was very scared… The box was so heavy and bulky that the delivery man asked me for help to get it out of the van! It must be said that the chair alone weighs 22kg. And it is extremely well protected! Each part of the chair is wrapped separately in a decent amount of bubble wrap. The parts that can rub against each other are separated by pieces of solid cardboard. Some pieces of cardboard are so thick that they seem as hard as wood. Smaller items such as screws and wheels are put together in a smaller cardboard box. And to top it all off, the whole thing is delivered not in one, but in two large cardboard boxes nested inside each other!
So yes, the package was particularly heavy on arrival. At a glance, I would say that the whole package was about thirty kilos! But at least it arrived in perfect condition (apart from a few easily erasable stains on the white cover). And in the end, all this weight left me with an undeniable impression of seriousness and solidity.
After unpacking everything, it was time for me to set up the chair. Given the weight of the beast, I was frankly afraid to do it by myself…
But overall, the assembly of the ErgoChair 2 from Autonomous proved to be rather easy! Each element was easy to find, and there were even a few extra nuts and bolts, just in case. The instructions were clear, except for the installation of the armrests. At that point, I made a mistake and had to start all over again, which had never happened to me before.
I must however warn you that the instructions are only in English, with a rather extensive vocabulary. The drawings will normally be enough to guide you, but if you are in doubt, you may not be able to rely on the text to guide you.
The wrench provided is of a quality I have never encountered before when buying a kit! It allows you to securely fix all the elements without ever having to twist or hurt your hands.
As a result, despite the weight of some elements (especially the extremely heavy metal base), and the slight headache regarding the armrests, I was able to assemble the chair by myself in less than an hour. I would never have believed it when I saw the package arrive.
Features and functionalities of the ErgoChair 2
Now let us dive into the heart of the matter, and let’s really test this ErgoChair 2! To begin, here is a summary of its main features:
- Armrests: 2,5 D (I explain this below!)
- Backrest: Tiltable and dynamic.
- Seat: Tiltable and adjustable in height and from front to back.
- Rocking-Chair: No
- Back support: Yes, integrated and adjustable
- Head Cushion: Integrated and modular
- Max capacity: 159 kg (350 lbs)
As you can see, the ErgoChair 2 has a very large number of features. Almost everything on this chair is customizable. Nothing is missing, except maybe a rocking chair feature, which I personally do not necessarily need.
ErgoChair 2 : my first impressions
The ErgoChair 2 is a comprehensive chair with multiple features. It is not a chair that you sit on without giving it a second thought… To fully enjoy it, you have to learn how to tame it! But let’s start with my first feelings.
A feeling of unbeatable sturdiness
What is most striking about the ErgoChair 2 is the overall impression of sturdiness it conveys. Remember, this chair weighs 22kg, and it is significant… Many parts are made of metal. The base of the seat weighs about ten kilos on its own! And the few parts made of plastic are hard as steel. The fabric of the backrest and the seat are also very strong. After a few days of use, no threads stick out. So everything looks very aesthetically pleasing and this chair should serve me well for a long time to come. Another nice aspect: despite its weight and high durability, the ErgoChair 2 is very discreet. It takes up a certain amount of space but is always quiet.
All features of the ErgoChair 2
Let’s now move on to a small test of the different features of the chair.
To begin with, the wheels work perfectly well. They allow you to move smoothly and remain stable once you have found your position.
The armrests are easily adjustable in height and range. The only drawback here is that the maximum tilt amplitude of the armrests is very small. This prevents me from having my right arm perfectly rested while using the keyboard.
The piston to adjust the height of the chair holds well and is completely silent. But here too, I noticed a slight lack of amplitude. The older among you may feel frustrated.
Finally, the mechanism that supports the spine also impressed me. The dynamic backrest system allows you to find the right inclination and instinctively keep it without effort.
Is the ErgoChair 2 comfortable?
After these first impressions, I had to tame the ErgoChair 2 in order to make the most of its many features. The ErgoChair 2 is not an office chair that you just simply sit on! With it, everything has to be thought through.
It takes time to find one’s marks
Let’s be clear, it was a bit difficult for me to find my bearings with this chair. That’s right! Almost everything is adjustable on the ErgoChair 2. As a result, you will have to tame 7 or 8 independent settings if you want to get the most out of it. I’ll admit it, the settings lack a little bit of ergonomics. Some mechanisms cannot be used instinctively, like on most office chairs. Autonomous is well aware of this.
The manufacturer has taken the time to explain in the manual each handle located under the seat … But keep in mind that the instructions are in English! It’s tricky for those whose level of English isn’t up to scratch… Fortunately, you can find on the Autonomous website several well-made explanatory videos. Thanks to these videos, I was able to quickly find my marks.
So yes, you will need some time to adjust to this chair. For the first hour, you’ll literally have to try out each handle one by one, and experiment with each control individually before you find the perfect position for you.
Once you’ve done this bit of work, what a treat! You always feel comfortable and relaxed, even after several hours of use. The backrest, both flexible and firm, fits the spine perfectly, from the lower back to the neck. The height-adjustable back support adapts, I think, to all body builds. But above all, I love the dynamic inclination of the backrest. This system allows you to relax while feeling instantly supported, without having to touch a single handle. Really, this feature has radically changed my comfort at work.
The seat is both soft and stable. It can be adjusted in height, depth and inclination. At first, I had a little trouble understanding the benefits of this feature. But after several hours of experimentation, I found that by tilting my seat slightly downward, I could relieve the pain in my buttocks that I usually feel after a few hours in front of the computer.
Two small issues
As you can see, the ErgoChair 2 made an excellent impression on me overall. But I have to point out two problems to avoid any unpleasant surprises, even if for me these issues are not going to stop me from using this chair.
First of all, the seat and backrest covers are a bit rough. The whole thing lacks overall softness.
Another problem, probably more serious, is that the armrests are stiff. The materials used are not at all soft or smooth. The height and spacing adjustments are perfect, but they lack a real tilt adjustment. As a result, while writing this text, I often find myself with my right arm in the air, absolutely not held up by the armrest. This slight detail prevents me from being 100% comfortable while I work.
ErgoChair 2: My Final Verdict
If you have read my entire test, you already know it: my feeling about the ErgoChair 2 from Autonomous is globally very positive. With this office chair, we are clearly entering the top of the range! It is rare to find an office chair that offers both a firm and comfortable support, while being so customizable. Above all, I appreciate the dynamic inclination of the backrest, which allows me to change position instinctively according to my needs and feel instantly supported and comfortable in all circumstances… All it needs are truly reclining armrests to achieve perfection.
So yes, this chair is heavy. It will require some time and effort to adapt and to take full advantage of its potential… But the comfort of use and the feeling of sturdiness and stability that comes with it are well worth it!
If you have the budget (remember that the ErgoChair 2 costs nearly $400 !) to buy yourself a high-quality office chair, you can opt for the ErgoChair 2. Unless maybe you have problems with your arms or wrists and plan to work on the computer all day long with it…