The noblechairs Hero Real Leather Review – Go Big or Go Home

May 11, 2019
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PRODUCT INFO

noblechairs Hero Real Leather

Out now
Type Desk chair
Price $720/£580/€660

This review is for a noblechairs Hero Real Leather chair which has been provided to us by  our friends at overclockers.co.uk

Test rig for this chair: One human adult male. 6’3 (190cm), 16 stone 7 (231 lbs, 105kg).

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I love spas. Not the aromatherapy and cucumber eye cover kind but the sauna and steam room chased with an ice bucket after a workout followed by a pummelling sports massage kind. The kind that lets you know you’re alive, feels good and cracks all those irritating joints that you just can’t do yourself (yeah ok, I’m getting a bit old now and I creak in various places!). Why am I talking about spas in a gaming chair review? Well it became something of a thing among some friends when I reviewed my first gaming chair a few years ago for Wccftech, the AK Racing Premium V2 as I talked about a few things I equated with the word comfort and mentioned the Maldives.

Now, whenever I do a review, those friends often tell me it’s obviously not very good because I didn’t rate the given item “Maldives out of 10”. Since then, I’ve typically tried to associate some kind of experience with the chair I’m reviewing to give readers a sense of how it feels to me and the spa experience is kind of the closest thing I’ve got. I’ve had some other chairs since then but the AK has been my daily driver in the home office, let’s see if the noblechairs Hero can change that…

I’ve reviewed a few chairs over the years and today we take a look at one from a company I’ve had my eye on for a while: noblechairs. So yes, awkward, lowercase joined up name aside, it’s time to get down and dirty with the Hero in its real leather guise. So what are we looking at here?

The Hero is the latest addition to the noblechairs range. A chair designed for the bigger people among us so it should certainly be the one for me. I’ve often struggled a bit with gaming chairs as I’m a fairly large chap and most gaming chairs are trying to be a bit too much like sports car bucket seats for my liking. These are fine if I’m going round a bend at 90mph and need something to hold my not inconsiderable girth in the seat in a sports car but it’s not really on when I’m sitting at my desk. That’s probably the main reason why I’d stuck with the AK as long as I had because it was one of the few chairs that didn’t feel too small and had a decent level of adjustability and comfort. In the Hero however, we’ve got a new champion in the space department. This chair is BIG and to top it all off, I’ve been given the real leather version (which comes at a price premium of course, more on that later).

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noblechairs Hero – In the Box/Build

A reassuringly heavy box arrives with a warning sign not to use a knife to cut the tape. Odd but ok. Upon opening, it’s evident why. The seat back is wrapped in clear plastic but otherwise exposed with no padding on top to stop a knife cutting through it. Do be careful in opening if you get one of these! I also requested the auto locking wheels and the chair comes arrives with a maintenance pack with a microfiber cloth and applicator pad for the leather cleaning and protection products it ships with. All the parts under the seat back are snugly in place in thick foam packing material.

noblechairs suggest putting the Hero together is a two man job but the family are out so it’s just me on my lonesome. Clear instructions are excellent and easy to follow and in all honesty, it’s actually pretty easy to put together with just me on my own. Slightly tricky is pulling the seat back spring to 90 degrees to make it easier mount the back on and do be sure to pull the lever first so that it snaps all the way forward with all hands well clear before then pulling it back (the spring is strong, needs to be with a chair this heavy of course) but a couple of attempts and the bracket is in the right position.

45 minutes later and I’ve got a new chair put together. Some vendors (such as Overclockers UK) offer an installation service but unless you’re particularly slight or have other difficulties, it’s honestly not needed.

The overall fit and finish of the chair is one which lends a credence of dependability to the chair. This is a chair I think will last a long time…

Side Note – Griping Time

Time for a mini-gripe then. Not about the Hero, but about why I chose the leather option. The AK Racing which I’ve been using for the last few years is a great chair but a couple of issues have arisen with it. As I mentioned in my original review, the armrests are not particularly adjustable having purely height movement and nothing else. Additionally, when I first reviewed the chair in the depths of winter, the PU leather was fine but in the (blistering!) British summer, it gets hot and uncomfortable quickly in a way that normal leather doesn’t. Final point here, the material itself after a few years of sitting in it has stretched and gathered on the base, again in a way that real leather simply doesn’t.

Steve who supplied me the chair says it’s worth noting that the real leather option is 1.7mm thick real leather and should last ages, but that the PU leather base chair they sell is also made using 1.5mm thick PU leather so should still have better durability than a lot of other gaming chairs out there that use very thin PU leather. It’s good to know for if someone is buying on a budget but I’m a big guy and generally like relatively high end gear so real leather it is for me. This is an expensive chair however and at £579.95 may be beyond what most would consider for a chair. If that's the case, the £349.99 PU leather option may be a better purchase.

The noblechairs Hero in Action

So to the chair itself. Time to take my first sit down in what is clearly meant to be a “throne” (given noblechairs crown logo) and “join the nobility” as the brochure calls it. First thing I notice is that there’s almost no play compared to the AK. You know how some chairs have that tiny bit of wobble? None of that nonsense here. The spring on the base for rocking is easily adjustable and if left locked or unlocked the chair feels sturdy and dependable.

Armrests are referred to as “4D” given the adjustability options of height, depth, width and angle and although the angle options are fairly limited with preset positions at 90 degrees and what looks to be about 20 degrees inwards/outwards and that’s it. Even so, the increased adjustability allows for a more customised setup than with the AK. Height options are perfect for a guy my height although for a chair this price, it could have come with two gas lifts (as some chairs I’ve reviewed do) so that shorter people would also be catered for without having to spend more. The gas lift itself is a class 4 and rated for up to an 180kg occupant. As a final gripe, the auto locking wheels, while excellent in concept (when you sit down, they compress a spring in the wheel which locks them into place) seem to be not strong enough to cope with the weight of the chair so when rolling it around, the chair always has to be ever so slightly lifted to unlock the wheels. A bit of a pain when trying to manoeuvre the chair into position after sitting in it but of course important for anyone who uses pedals etc while seated. If you don't need your wheels to lock, I'd suggest sticking with the supplied casters.

To the pièce de résistance then. The Hero comes with an integrated lumbar adjustment! THIS is what I’ve needed in a desk chair. Of course it still comes with the ridiculous cushions for the lower back that so many other chairs have which I can never seem to get truly 100% comfortable with no matter how I position them, I give the base cushion a go before casting it to one side and diving in with the lumbar adjustment wheel. This is more like it. No massive steps, no on or off, just a great wheel with continuously increasing/decreasing pressure against the lower back.

I’ve had the chair for a couple of weeks now and that’s because I wanted to get some decent usage out of it before writing this review. I’ve had quite a few several hour sessions sitting in it and can safely say that although it’s harder in terms of padding/cushioning than all the other desk chairs I’ve had, this is the most comfortable by far. I can sit in it for hours and not get up feeling all slouched and like my posture has collapsed to hell while sitting down.

Ultimately then, this is the chair for me. Like that Swiss ski resort spa that leaves you feeling like a new man after a hard day on the mountain, ready to face the slopes again tomorrow, the Hero is a chair that works for you. Are there softer chairs? Absolutely, but I’d be surprised if they were more comfortable after a prolonged session. It’s time to say goodbye to my AK, I’ll be sticking with the nobility.

The noblechairs Hero easily bags itself a Recommended award.

8.5

The noblechairs Hero in real leather guise is a triumph among chairs. Ergonomic, comfortable and with a genuine lumbar support wheel for those that want to be sat at their desk properly.

Performance9
Value7
Design & Aesthetics8
Features10

Pros

  • Built in continuous lumbar adjustment!
  • Extremely well put together
  • Real leather
  • Induces good posture

Cons

  • Only one length gas lift supplied
  • Limited ability to angle armrests
  • Locking wheels too sensitive to the weight of the chair
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