Maxnomic’s Pro Chief Offers A Truly Custom Experience
Maxnomic is one of the premiere names in the gaming chair business. If you’re a fan of Twitch or Linus Tech Tips, you’ve probably already seen them. Today, we’re looking at the Maxnomic Pro Chief, a slick two-tone chair that leans into contrast and aims to elevate your gaming setup.
Maxnomic even let us take their new custom logo embroidering service for a spin, and since they’re the only outfit on the market to offer such a service, we agreed. Starting at $399, is the Pro Chief right for you?
- Seat Bottom: With Side Bolsters
- Headrest Pillow Color: White
- Lumbar Cushion Color: White
- Assembly Required: Yes
- Default Base: Standard Base
- Default Cylinder: Standard
- 4D Armrests: Yes
- Default Armrest: Standard
- Reclinable Backrest: Yes
- Inside Material: Durable cold cured foam
- Cover Material: High-quality PU-leather
Base Price: ($399)
- HD Base: $79.90
- HD Base and XL Casters: $109.90
- Standard, Short, Tall Cylinder: Free Customization
- Premium Armrest: $59.90
- Embroidered Name: $39.90
- Embroidered Logo: Front: $79.99, Back: $129.99 (average, varies with design).
Price as Reviewed: $778.79
The big thing to know about Maxnomic is that they’re OGs in the gaming chair world. They were making gaming chairs before gaming chairs exploded, going back to 2011 when they still went purely by NEEDforSEAT.
The Maxnomic branding came about in 2014 after their attempts at innovation were stymied by their current manufacturer. From that time onward, all of their chairs are engineered and designed in Germany, without restriction, and are produced in China.
Hearing a product is “produced in China” can raise warning flags, but don’t sound the alarm yet. Maxnomic is one of the few brands that refuse to sell its products on Amazon because they want to handle their own customer service and consulting.
Choosing to stay off the world’s largest marketplace to make sure your customers get the right chair and have access to qualified support is impressively “customer first,” especially when profits are likely being lost.
Their “About Us” page also helpfully details a number of other key features that are standard to Maxnomic chairs:
- An extremely sturdy and additionally fortified steel frame with a pipe wall thickness of 2mm minimum (most other manufacturers only use 1 – 1.5mm!)
- Upholsteries made from PU and cold cured foam components suitable for the particular categories. Even after permanent usage the upholsteries will still
- provide sufficient support instead of feeling worn out.
- Freely adjustable backrests with safety limit stops to prevent the chair from tilting beyond lying position.
- Perfectly movable 4D armrests that cannot only be adjusted in height but also in depth, to both sides and in the angle.
- A convenient and sturdy tilt mechanism with 5 lockable positions (no simple sheet steel rockers).
- Class 4 (!) gas springs – verified by the Technical Supervisory Association (TÜV / LGA). Many other manufacturers keep using class 3 gas springs.
- Fortified metal star bases made from aluminum pressure die-casting – no synthetics!
These are all very good qualities to look for in a gaming chair, especially since you can pick one up for as low as $339, or $359-379 if you’d like to customize color.
I’ve reviewed chairs costing roughly the same amount or more with plastic wheel bases and less adjustable armrests. You can also upgrade a number of features, including that base and armrest, but also the casters and cylinder to gain an additional step-up in quality.
Packaging and Assembly
Moving onto the specific model I’m reviewing today, the Maxnomic Pro Chief arrives in a big box that clearly reveals that you’re receiving a new gaming chair.
Thankfully, mine shipped “signature required” so no one would walk away with my new chair. It’s heavy and awkward to carry, so be sure to have an extra set of hands when bringing it inside and starting assembly.
Inside the box, everything is packaged to ensure it doesn’t slide around during shipping and risk damage. I also like that the seat-back is slightly recessed to avoid being cut when you open the box.
Maxnomic avoids an excess of packing material, which is very welcome after other chairs builds that required multiple garbage bags to dispose of all the plastic and styrofoam (it’s easily the most annoying part of building a chair). There’s just enough here and it was easy to manage throughout.
Assembly is straightforward, especially if you’ve built a gaming chair before. If you haven’t, Maxnomic included a nice, glossy instruction manual that walks you through the process step-by-step. It’s advisable to have two people, but the entire process took me about twenty-five minutes by myself.
Putting it together consists of four parts and some trim work: attaching the seat to the back, attaching the tilt mechanism to the seat, fitting the casters and gas cylinder into the base, and then slotting the cylinder into the tilt mechanism. The screws for the backrest were already threaded into the slots, which seemed nice at first but really just added an extra step removing them to attach the back.
I built mine in my classroom and forgot my drill at home, but Maxnomic helpfully includes everything you’ll need right in the box, including some spare parts and a combination Allen Wrench/Phillips Head tool.
The hardest part of the whole process was attaching the set to the backrest. Keeping the back in position while attaching the screws was tricky, and I cross-threaded more than once. This has been the case on every gaming chair I’ve assembled, so it’s not a reflection on the Pro Chief but there has got to be a better way that allows a single builder less frustration getting it put together. Once you get a screw started on each side, however, it’s smooth sailing.
Taken as a whole, building the Pro Chief was very standard with little standing out from the competition.
Custom Logo Printing – Maxnomic’s Latest and Greatest
As you can tell, these photographs are all taken inside a classroom. When I’m not reviewing gaming chairs and expensive mechanical keyboards, I’m an elementary school teacher.
When Maxnomic reached out with an offer to let me custom design my own logo to have embroidered on the chair, I couldn’t resist bringing my students into the design process. Together, we came up with these:
There’s a good amount of fine detail in that, between the very thin stroke around the lettering and the pencil and color transitions, and I wasn’t sure how it would turn out. With the pencil in particular, if the colors were too far off, the entire thing would look bad.
Maxnomic nailed it. I am very impressed with how close the logo is to the clipart-style design I sent them. While there are a few small differences (like the color shift in the eraser on the front), it’s a much better match than I could have hoped for.
The quality of the stitching is excellent. It’s tight and very well done. I was also impressed at how well the logo resolved since I had to blow up the original clipart quite a bit. Maxnomic made it simple, though, only requiring a 1080×1080 JPG file, so I was able to trace and sharpen right in PhotoPea. Oftentimes, you’ll need to submit a vector file when submitting art for print or embroidery and, frankly, I’m not even sure how to create one.
The cost for the logo stitching is something else entirely, though. A logo on the front of the backrest (where you’ll sit) averages $79.99 while the back is around $129.99. These can vary slightly depending on how complex your logo is. The total cost for what you see here is a whopping $209. It’s excellent, but that’s nearly two thirds the cost of a whole second chair.
That said, I’m not aware of any other gaming chair vendor that currently offers such a service, so Maxnomic can afford the premium. Still, this feels much too rich for my blood as well as any of the gamers I’ve spoken to.
The Pro Chief is a well-made chair. That much is apparent from the get-go. The cold cure foam is thick and has just enough give to feel firm without being hard like Secret Lab or Noblechairs gaming chairs tend to when first assembled.
It’s also composed of multiple molded pieces secured to the internal steel frame rather than pieces for the seat and backrest as found on cheaper chairs. I didn’t tear the chair apart, but you can actually see how the foam and frame come together in the video below:
The chair uses PU leather, which is easy to clean and long-lasting. The material used on the Pro Chief is soft to the touch and, like the logo, the stitching is some of the best I’ve ever seen on a gaming chair. There are almost no loose threads, even where lines are tied off. The high-contrast theme applies to the stitchwork, too, which shows Maxnomic’s excellent attention to detail.
The downside to PU leather is that it tends not to be very breathable. In the hot months, it’s common for chairs like the Pro Chief to hold heat in the foam and for the upholstery to make me sweat. I can’t speak to that yet, unfortunately, because it’s still the cold season here in New York. I haven’t had any such issue yet, even when sitting in it for extended periods in the full teacher two shirt, tie get-up I wear throughout the week.
The chair uses the common racing seat design, complete with bolsters on the seat and back. These are mostly for looks here, and I didn’t find they hugged me into the seat like I’ve experienced in other chairs. That’s a good thing, because I find the extra room much more comfortable, especially when I want to cross my legs under me when the kids are out of the room.
I also like how adjustable it is. It offers a plentiful amount of recline and tilt with adjustable resistance using a knob on the bottom. Your sitting angle can also be locked, which is great if you’re putting your feet up (like when you’re playing a console game). The recline doesn’t go into a full lay, however, which doesn’t bother me but might be a consideration if you like to nap in your gaming chair.
Maxnomic configured my chair with the full suite of upgrades, which include a reinforced wheel-base, a tall gas cylinder, and upgraded arm rests. A stronger wheel base is always welcome, especially if you’re a larger person. I opted for the tall cylinder which extends the height by an additional inch. This comes at no additional cost and is a great way to customize the chair for your height and desk. It was a perfect match for my own desk.
The most unique upgrade is definitely the armrests. They offer height, depth, angle, and width adjustment. I was able to easily find a comfortable position whether I was typing at my desk, leaning back for a phone call, or elbows out to show pictures from our science textbook.
The same would apply whether you’re playing a PC game, sitting back with a controller, or even feet up with a laptop on your lap. What’s really interesting are the “finger rests” which double as grips for when you’re really into that roller coaster sim.
Big picture: the Maxnomic Pro Chief is a comfortable, well-made chair that has an exceptional attention to detail and enough adjustability to accommodate almost anything you’d like to do with it. That said, it’s not Maxnomic’s top of the line and in many ways it feels very similar to other gaming chairs on the market.
It lacks some ergonomic features like built-in lumbar support (though the lumbar pillow is nice) or height/depth adjustment on the seat or back. The Pro Chief is a good chair, better than most in its price range; I just wish it were more remarkable.
The real defining feature is the custom embroidery, which is fantastic. If you want a chair that is really and truly your own, there are few better ways. Given how expensive it is, it’s likely to be a hard sell on top of the cost of a new chair.