I have had the pleasure of reviewing a number of chairs from some leading companies from the likes of AKRacing, Arozzi and E-Win just to name a few. In this review, I get to take a look at the British Manufacture Karnox and their gaming chair The Commander.
From the start, their Customer Service is outstanding always answering my emails and they even chose the chair that would best suit me. I feel Customer Service should be exceptional when you are making a purchase like this, especially when you consider the price.
Customer service is key to good sales.
So is Karnox? let’s find out
Karnox started in 2009 with the production of high-end car seats. In 2014, after years of design and development, we were able to launch the first range of high-quality gaming chairs.
The brand is the joint vision of a UK Rolls-Royce engineer and the Karnox Ltd team. The idea was to combine cutting-edge automotive design with world-class manufacturing to create eSports chairs and accessories that improve gaming performance and allow you to play for longer hours while staying comfortable and healthy. Inspired by performance sports cars and designed for eSports, Karnox products deliver on style, comfort and build quality. We collaborate with award-winning designers around the world from the USA, UK, and Europe. Along with having great designers, we have our own state of the art production facility and manufacture all the chairs ourselves. We do not outsource or rebrand! This also means we constantly invest in our factory and improve our manufacturing process.
This, combined with our rigorous testing standards, top quality control, use of the best materials a product at the lower price and ultimately the best gaming experience.
Now with all that info, like cutting-edge, improved gaming performance, state of the art production facility etc, have Karnox really created an outstanding chair, that my lazy butt will feel comfortable upon? and provide support for my back? let us find out and move to sales and shipping.
On the front of the box is does say, DO NOT USE A BLADE to cut open, please use common sense here and understand there is a reason for this, as you will inadvertently damage your product. Karnox Branding is present across everything and if you are unsure that you have been sent the correct chair there is a sticker on one of the sides.
Once you have opened the box you will be happy to know that everything has a place, and is wrapped up for protection, just look at the starbase on top. Which is great news as these chairs weigh a bloody tonne, and as my delivery driver said ‘I really hope I do not see you again with another one of these bloody products, they are a nightmare to carry‘. He is not wrong, getting these upstairs into the spare room takes a little time, and I always enlist the help of my neighbour.
Before we go any further here are the borning specs:
- Size: For the small to large build user. Recommended up to 6’4″.
- Weight acceptance: 300lbs / 135kgs
- Comfort: built-in as standard with our dense cold-formed inner foam cushioning, side hugging cushion restraints. Ergonomic supported backrest.
- Foam density: 53kg/m*3
- High-quality material: Vegan-friendly PU leather for easy upkeep and durability, strong steel frame for construction.
- 360-degree swivel.
- Pro-Spec. Upgraded tilt mechanism allows you to reclinable back between 90 – 155 degrees with locking capabilities.
- Fully adjustable 4D armrests. Left, right, up, down, forward, backward, angle left, angle right. The upper armrest is topped with soft-touch PU, with carbon-fibre imprint patterning.
- Height adjustable seating: Class 4 Gas Lift Piston.
- Base: Slimline, strong, lightweight solid cast aluminium alloy with colour matched inset panels.
- Wheels: make friction a matter of the past with our Pro-Spec solid rubber roller-blade smooth-glide wheels. These are kind to hard surface floors.
I did wonder about this spec ‘Vegan-friendly PU leather‘. So what is PU Leather? ‘PU leather, or polyurethane leather, is an artificial leather made of thermoplastic polymer used for making furniture or shoes. 100% PU leather is completely artificial and is considered vegan’
Everything else from the specs above I have seen before when I have reviewed other gaming chairs, so let us look at each part of the chair before we build.
First off the starbase which uses a matt black finish with white aesthetics and good use of an angular design to make the starbase unique to Karnox. The wheels may look slim and flimsy, but they are not, they are strong and sturdy and they glide like butter on any surface, possibly the best wheels I have seen and used on any gaming chair so far.
The next part to take a look at is the mechanism which houses the Class 4 Gas Lift Piston which can hold up to 300lbs / 135kgs. The Gas Lift Piston can be hidden using what I call the Gas lift housing. This is simply three pieces of plastic that expand and retract as the gas lift raises and lowers the chair. The mechanism itself is amazing, offer a sweet rocking option, so you can sit down and rock yourself while you game. You control this feature with two controls, one is a lever on the left which allows the seat to rock or not rock, and a turning knob under the mechanism which controls how lose the rocking feels. There is one other lever on the mechanism this is on the righthand side and controls the Gas Lift Piston allowing you to raise and lower the chair.
This type of mechanism is the No1 mechanism to own when it comes to ANY Racing Style Gaming Chair.
The Seat is the next section to look at as it contains many of the core features so let us get right into this. Moving from right to left, we have the lever mechanism that allows you to recline the back between 90 – 155 degrees with many locking positions so you can create that perfect tilt. As you can see from the picture below the same angular design used within the starbase is featured here, along with the branding. However, if you look closer bottom left of the picture, just below the Karnox logo you can see a pressure crack, this is because of the metal mechanism behind has been pushed into the cover and was not seen during quality control checks.
The armrest is next to look at, in which the industry call 4D armrests, what this simply means is they can move Left, right, up, down, forward, backward, angle left, angle right. The armrest is covered in PU Leather with a carbon-fibre printing which I must say looks good. 4D Armrests offer total control and freedom to create the perfect rest for your arms and all chairs should use them. You control the elevation from the side of the armrest seen in picture one, in picture 2 the far right button controls the forwards and backwards motion while the button underneath the armrest controls the Left and right motion. To angle the armrest all you have to do is use your own strength to move it into position, there is a noticeable lock within every 5mm of movement, so once positioned it will not move. The carbon-fibre printing is also textured and like I already said, looks good and really sets the armrest off in style.
Now for the section which you will be parking your rear end upon, yes the seat. The design of the seat keeps with the angular design which was first seen on the starbase and uses soft PU Leather throughout with the centre of the chair using exquisite white stitching to form a diamond pattern.
There is enough stuffing within the seat to make my rear end feel comfortable for a very long period of time for gaming to general work. There is no company branding on this section which I feel is a great idea, as there would be no way of seeing it if there was. There is nothing on the left apart from some more plastic housing that covers the other part of the metal mechanism the allows the chair to tilt, yet I would have thought Karnox would have placed some branding here.
We only have two more parts to look at, but before we move on to the biggest section the backrest I want to bring up the neck and lumbar cushions which I feel are the best I have ever seen. They use soft to touch material with a diamond etched design with a Karnox branding tag on one of the side. Why are these so good? because you can wash them, I have owned a lot of chairs that come with these cushions and none of them offers the facility to clean them, this is amazing, as we know our hair can become greasy and we can sweat a lot during hot days and intense gaming sessions.
Having the ability to unzip, remove, clean, just makes these truly exceptional.
Now I did find one issue, the back lumbar straps fell down the side of the chair as there was no real way to hold them in place something like a Plastic retaining device which AKRacing add to their chairs see Pic 1 below, this would fix this issue. Instead, I had to use my own design see pic 2 this resolved the issue, this is simply a cable tie.
Now we come to the final part of the chair the backrest, the part of the chair that needs to support your back, as we all know a back that is not supported will equate to a very bad back. The front and back of the backrest is a great place to promote a brand and Karnox have gone to town here. Their logo is on the top front, back and on the front side, then you have the Karnox Icon on the front, however, this is hidden when you use the neck cushion (see images below). When it comes to attaching the back to the seat you will be using plastic housing seen in pic 8 to hide the screws while a rubber plug with a Karnox icon printed on it will hide the screw that attaches the housing to the backrest.
Like the seat, the design of the backrest keeps with the angular design which was first seen on the starbase and uses soft PU Leather throughout with the centre of the chair using exquisite white stitching to form a diamond pattern once again.
Everything about the design shines one thing the term ‘angular‘. There is an angular design to everything from the plastic housings hiding the metal chair mechanisms, to the etching and design choices when it comes to the PU Leather sections, even the starbase.
So that’s the chair and every section looked at well, with great images I must say, so want to know how it was built? got you covered there as well, here is a sweet video of me building the Karnox Commander Gaming Chair. The audio track used is CLAWZ – Candyland, just in case you are wondering.
So after building, checking out every section what do I think of their choice of chair for me? well overall they have chosen well, the neck cushion aligns perfectly when I lay my head and the lumbar really supports my lower back, much more than other lumbar cushions from other gaming chairs that I have used. Yet I do feel the lumbar straps need to be a little longer just to accommodate this chair’s design as they are really being pulled. It is just great that the stitching used in every section of the chair including the lumbar and neck cushions are truly exceptional. The placement of branding goes without saying is perfect if you want viewers to know what you are sitting on, they will know this without any question or doubt.
Maybe add a HUGE ICON on the back of the backrest.
The armrests and their design, quality, functionality, durability, is amazing, 4D armrests are the best armrests available for racing style gaming chairs. They offer a good range of positioning and can support your arms at all times. The backrest tilt can give you the option to sleep, if you have been kicked out of the bedroom, self-isolating due to CORVID-19 or you are an eSports player taking a power nap. The rocking mechanism is a fun little quirk, as when I was working I did see myself rocking myself back and forth, or when I was chilling playing Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order. Finally, the wheels like I said before, are the best wheels I have seen used on any chair.
Overall the quality and design are top-notch, with features like tilt, rocking, 4D Armrests, neck and back support is all welcomed. The whole design flows well, with its angular approach with a black and white core colour scheme, using branding within the correct locations to push the product to viewers. The only issue is the quality control check, as the damage on of the side mechanism should have been picked up upon and replaced before sending such expensive products out to customers. The chair is extremely comfortable and supports your rear end and back very well, just like other gaming chairs.
One final NOTE if you have CATS, do not let them rest of this, as they will claw the hell out of it and ruin your new chair.
I would score the chair a 9.5 due to the quality control as for a chair at this price these sorts of things should not happen, but as I do not have a .5 option it is scoring a 10 out of 10. As this chair had an issue this does not mean every chair will have a quality control issue and the majority of the lumbar straps will have no issues fitting to there chairs.
You can purchase this chair here https://www.karnox.co.uk/product-page/commander for £349.99
Karnox offers many other chairs, so if you are not 100% sold on this one check out the others, if still need a little more help, reach out to them for guidance.
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Command and Conquer all. Unique to our range, the Commander chair features a solid style seatback. Design inspired by the world's most prestigious sports cars crossed with a chair straight off a spaceship command bridge, the Commander is defined and elegant. It features a wide seat, tall back, side lumbar supports and a padded head-rest giving you the comfort and endurance you need for long hours sitting, so you can command and conquer all. Pro-Spec is included, which features our slimline aluminium cast base, roller-blade smooth glide wheels and 4D armrests.
Product Currency: GBP
Product Price: 349.99