Anda Seat recently sent me one of their black Phantom 3 chairs to try out. I’ve assembled it and tested it for several hours to see how it holds up. Read on to hear my thoughts and whether this chair’s worth a purchase.
Table of Contents
The Phantom 3 showed up in a plain cardboard box at my doorstep. It had the words “Your unboxing experience starts here”, similar to what Secretlab does – although I will say Secretlab’s boxes are cooler.
I opened the box and was pleased to see layers of malleable Styrofoam holding all the important components in place. Everything was packaged for minimal waste and I didn’t have a mess to clean up on my floor when all was said and done.
Buy “Anda Seat Phantom 3”
Thick cardboard braces along the edges of the box help with shock during delivery. It all gave off a premium flair even though this isn’t one of Anda Seat’s premier chairs. Leads me to believe they value all their products.
Unboxing each piece of the chair took little time, thanks to the fact that the armrests were already assembled and the smaller components were inside a box of their own. I only had to pull six things out of the package before setting the box aside.
Like other Anda Seat chairs, the instruction manual is massive and comes in a dozen languages. The instructions were easy to follow, even if one or two phrases didn’t quite make sense in English.
From start to finish, it only took me around 15 minutes to put the chair together. Most of the assembly process was smooth, but I did encounter a few hiccups.
For one, I had to remove four screws from the backrest before putting the chair together. I’ll never understand why these screws are preinstalled and not with the packaged ones. It’s just an extra step to remove them.
I had a really difficult time getting one of those screws back in place after attaching the backrest to the seat. No matter how I twisted or turned, it didn’t want to go in place. I eventually got it, but it boiled down to dumb luck.
The Phantom 3 was the first chair I’ve seen packaged with extra screws. At least I believe they’re extra. I spent several minutes reading through the instruction manual again and again, trying to figure out where they went. I don’t mind extra screws, but I still can’t help but wonder if they’re supposed to go somewhere. It will forever haunt my dreams.
Everything else was easy enough. Two plastic screw covers on either side of the chair are loosely held in place with magnets, so I’m curious how long they’ll stay in place.
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|Anda Seat Phantom 3 Gaming Chair Specs|
|Weight: 50.7 pounds|
|Seat Height Adjustment: 17.9 to 21.8 inches off the ground|
|Seat Width: 20.47 inches|
|Weight Capacity: Up to 200 pounds|
|Chair Material: DuraXtra Leatherette (or EverSoft Linen Fabric)|
|Reclining Angle: 90° to 160°|
|5-Wheel Nylon Base|
|Padded 1D Armrests|
|Comes with a head cushion and lumbar support pillow|
|2-year limited warranty excluding wear and tear|
Let’s take a look at the Phantom 3’s top features:
There’s not much to say about the Phantom 3’s armrests, which only move up and down. Sure, that’s a critical feature, but I (and most gamers, I assume) rely on armrests a lot. Not being able to move them in any other direction consistently leaves me in an awkward position. I expected a little more flexibility at this chair’s price point. After all, the Kaiser Frontier is only $100 more and has 4D maneuverability.
That said, the armrests are pretty comfortable when I’m able to use them. It’s a firm rubbery material that supports my forearms well. I haven’t used them for hours on end though since I can’t move them exactly where I like them. They’re also a little on the short side.
I’m a fan of the Phantom 3’s recline. It drops you down to 160° (that’s 20°) from horizontal, making for a nice place to rest. The rocker feature basically lets the chair lay perfectly flat by relying on your body weight. You’ve got multiple additional settings between vertical for gaming and lying flat for watching TV or a movie at a more relaxed angle.
The Phantom 3 has a rocker feature, but I can’t imagine it getting any use except when you’re lying back for a nap. It’s way too stiff to use in any other position and will immediately spring you back up the moment you stop using your legs to push yourself back. There is a lock for the recline feature, but I just leave it open since I can never get it to go back anyway.
Your seat has just shy of four inches of movement up and down. That’s more wiggle room than the average chair for accommodating multiple gamers in your household. Even if you’re a single player at this time, there’s a good chance you’ll find the seat height that you want.
Lumbar support comes in the form of a convex pillow wedged between the lower back and the chair itself. It works quite well to provide the comfort my lower back needs for long bouts of gaming. I’m impressed with the amount of foam inside and how firm it feels. There’s nothing to hold the pillow in place besides friction, so expect it to move around whenever you adjust or stand up to refuel.
The headrest pillow is a little softer than the lumbar support pillow but still provides a nice cushy surface to relax on. It clips around the headrest at the top of the chair and limits you to about three inches of vertical adjustment space if you need to move it. I’ve found it works well for me at the lowest setting, where it fits right into the crook of my neck. I have a love/hate relationship with headrest pillows, but this one I really like.
Anda Seat claims to put a lot of effort into build quality, and so far I’ve been impressed with all their chairs. The Phantom 3 is no exception.
There are a few imperfections, so let’s get them out of the way now. Whenever I sit in the chair, it makes some creaks and pops. The same holds true when I move the chair around while sitting in it or when attempting to rock. They’re not loud by any means, and I can’t really imagine them turning into anything worse, but they are there.
It’s worth pointing out at this point that the Phantom 3’s only rated for up to 200 pounds. That seems incredibly low to me for an adult gaming chair. That doesn’t bode well for longevity.
The wheel base is nylon, and I’m assuming that’s the reason why the chair can’t support much weight. It looks sturdy enough, but that’s going to be the first thing to go if I’m not careful. A chair with a broken wheel base is totally worthless. The polyurethane wheels should hold up okay.
Anda Seat uses plastic covers to conceal mounting screws, and these are fine at a glance. They’re a bit thin on closer inspection and aren’t super rigid, but they do their job well.
All the other components on the Phantom 3 pass the quality test with flying colors. The armrests are robust and well done despite their movement limitations.
Both pillows look to be made well and have held up to everything I’ve thrown at them so far. I feel like the foam inside is good quality and will retain its shape for the duration.
I’m really impressed with the stitching from top to bottom. Anda Seat sent me the leatherette chair and I can’t find a single thread out of place or anything that looks short of well done. The fabric itself looks and feels nice and oozes the high-quality vibe I’m looking for. I’d have no issue having the Phantom 3 on display in my home if some friends came over to game, and I can’t say that of all my chairs.
Comfort and Ergonomics
I’ve put the Anda Seat Phantom 3 through its paces for a while now, and it is a very comfortable chair on my back and bottom. This holds true even after several hours at the screen working on this review or navigating through Tears of the Kingdom.
There’s nice firm padding on both the seat and backrest to keep me in place. I prefer chairs without much give, and the Phantom 3 definitely delivers. Since the foam feels really robust, I can’t imagine the chair getting less comfortable over time. Some chairs have me constantly readjusting to get comfortable, but that’s not the case here.
The DuraXtra leatherette feels fine against the skin, although it’s not the “premium” quality stuff they list on other products (like the Kaiser Frontier XL). This faux leather tends to break down over time and can get uncomfortable when skin sits on cracks or where pieces of leather have flaked off. That has yet to happen on this chair, but I’ve seen it on others.
I’ve called out the armrests already, and I wish I could move them more. I don’t really mind where they are when I have one hand on the keys and another on the mouse, but they’re not positioned well for me to type. Having extra adjustability makes it easy to move them back and forth depending on what I am doing.
The Phantom 3’s pillows are one of the best features. They’re super comfortable and a big reason why I can use the chair for a long time without needing to get up or adjust. There’s give when they need to give, but they provide tons of support for both my head and lower back.
My neck fits perfectly around the curve of the headrest pillow so I can lean back in comfort. I’m guessing the pillow’s designed to rest on the head itself, but I feel like it would be too firm for that purpose. It’s much better on the neck.
The lumbar support pillow’s convex shape matches the curvature of the lower back really well. I tend to slouch when gaming, but this cushion helps me keep a correct posture while being comfortable to rest on. It would be nice if I could lock it in place, but it’s one of the best lumbar support pillows I’ve seen.
All in all, the Phantom 3 supports my 6 foot, 160 pound frame well. There’s definitely some wiggle room here, but not much. The specs recommend the chair for gamers under 5’9”, and I feel like anyone taller than me wouldn’t fit well. Let’s not forget the 200 pound weight limit and the severe limitations it brings.
The Anda Seat Phantom 3 doesn’t disappoint if you’re looking for a comfortable chair. It’s not made for every body type, though. Anyone bigger than 6’ or 200 lbs should try out the Kaiser Frontier XL or Secretlab’s Titan Evo 2022. Just be aware these bigger chairs come at a higher cost.
I really like the headrest and lumbar support pillows. They’re a huge reason why the Phantom 3 is so comfortable and I couldn’t imagine using the chair without them. There’s plenty of padding in the backrest and seat and all these components feel high quality.
You get quite a bit for $300 with the Phantom 3 chair. Most top-tier chair manufacturers on par with Anda Seat don’t get down to this price point, leaving budget-minded gamers somewhat limited. I will say most other chairs at this price point don’t have nearly as much padding and fail miserably in the comfort department. This makes the Phantom 3 a steal at such a low price.
Getting a chair down to a $300 MSRP means you have to cut a few corners somewhere. Those really come out with the 1D armrests and the nylon wheel base. The wheel base is of no concern as long as it doesn’t break, but I feel like it will with repeated use. This holds especially true for someone closer to the chair’s 200 weight limit.
The armrests are tolerable, but I like to move mine around a lot depending on what I’m doing and I can’t do that here. I’d improve these if I could change one thing, but it would likely affect the chair’s cost to upgrade this feature.
For $300, I’d definitely recommend this chair to a friend who wants to start their gaming chair journey. The sweet spot for gaming chairs seems to be in the $400 to $600 range for balancing cost and features (think Secretlab Titan Evo 2022). Still, the Phantom 3 is amazing for what it gives. I’d just caution my buddy to treat the chair with kid gloves to increase the longevity.
Buy “Anda Seat Phantom 3”
What I liked 👍:
- Very comfortable foam padding in seat and backrest
- Excellent headrest and lumbar support pillow
- Good range for recline
- Big seat height coverage
- Excellent stitching and attention to detail
- Chair looks really good
- Low price point
What I didn’t like 👎:
- Stiff rocker feature
- 1D armrests
- Low weight limit
- Nylon wheel base
- Creaks and groans when sitting and moving