Strap Yourself In
Looking for a new gaming setup? Tired of just sitting on your boring old couch and looking to take your gaming man-cave to the next level? Then pull up your boring desk chair and check out this collection of over-the-top, crazy, affordable, and DIY gamer chairs.
Emperor Workstation 200
If you're looking for the ultimate gaming chair, look no further than NovelQuest's Emperor 200 Workstation. This 375-pound contraption that looks like a scorpion comes with three synchronized 19-inch LCD monitors, an integrated PlayStation 3, an Apple universal dock, a Logitech QuickCam Pro 9000 Webcamera, and a 7-inch LCD touchscreen to control the workstation.
Also included is a built-in Windows PC featuring an Intel Core i7-965 Extreme 3.2GHz processor, 12GB of DDR3 SDRAM, dual 1792MB nVidia GeForce GTX 295 graphics, and 1.28 terabytes of storage. On the downside, the OS is Windows Vista SP1. The Emperor Workstation features its own lighting system, an all-leather recliner, wireless noise-canceling headphones, a media card reader, two USB ports, two eSATA ports, and a Blu-ray disc player.
This gamer's haven is available in 14 colors and can be yours for around $40,000 depending on the options you select.
401 Driving Simulator
Step into Force Dynamic's 401 Driving Simulator to experience every twist and turn on the racetrack using many popular racing games like Live for Speed, iRacing, DiRT2, and even an old-school favorite: Super Mario Kart for Super Nintendo. The 401 can also be rigged up to work with Microsoft Flight Simulator.
Force Dynamics says an important part of what makes the 401 a realistic experience is how it handles rotation. The sensation you get from rotation can tell you if your car is about to spin out of control or fishtail, or simply convey how the car feels on the road when you're turning a corner. The 401 also uses gravity to approximate the sensations of acceleration and deceleration by pushing you back in the driver's seat when you speed up and letting you drop a little bit downwards when you're coming out of warp speed. You can find out more about how the 401 uses motion on Force Dynamics' site.
The 401 features a driving compartment, a powder-coated gray aluminum sheet for the projection screen, and a Hitachi CP-X260 projector with 1024 by 768 resolution to put you right in the game. Pricing ranges from $55,000 to $70,000, which is a little steep for most gamers, but you can check out the Force Dynamics Website to see the 401 in action.
Pro Gaming Table
This multitiered gaming table from Digital Edge has room for up to three 21-inch LCD monitors--as well as places for all your joysticks, steering columns, multifunction panels and keyboards, computer towers, and printers. Digital Edge says it designed the desk for use primarily with controllers from CH Products, makers of joysticks and controllers for everything from gaming systems to industrial cranes. The Pro Gaming Table costs $300 and is available to customers in the continental U.S only.
VRX Mach 3
The VRX Mach 3 doesn't have the same motion capabilities as the Force Dynamics 401, but this racing simulator still packs some cool features and effects.
The Mach 3 has three 24-inch LCD Samsung high-definition displays; a Logitech G27 steering control system, gearbox, and driving pedals; a 1500-watt Tactile Vibration Feedback System; a 1900-watt Tactile Power Amplifier; a 5.1 digital surround-sound amplifier; Omnipolar satellite speakers; an 8-inch Matrix Cellulose subwoofer; and an LED lighting system. The VRX Mach 3 can be used with Windows computers, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and Wii systems. VRX is also hard at work on a new full-motion flagship product called the iMotion.
Simulation F1 Cockpit
Get the feeling of being in an actual F1 racecar with the Simulation F1 Cockpit. The simulator uses the D-Box Gaming Cockpit suspended on a kart frame. The cockpit includes a racecar-style seat, plus four motion actuators to give you a realistic feeling of motion as you speed down the virtual raceway. Pricing starts at $25,000 and includes three monitors.
D-Box GP Pro 200
This flight and race simulator from D-Box has an adjustable seat and recliner, three motion actuators, and a three-point seat belt to keep you strapped in when the apparatus starts generating up to 2 Gs of acceleration. The GP Pro 200 comes with an adjustable platform for a keyboard, steering wheel, or flight simulator joystick. Pricing starts at $14,000.
Four Chairs for Everyone
At top left is the UK-based i-EX bean-bag chair featuring a faux leather bucket seat with a foam backing that sells for about $150. On the top right is the $150 Sumo Omni, which can be configured into ten different chair positions.
At bottom left is the PacM Chair concept inspired by the 30-year old classic Pac-Man and designed by Mexico-based designer Jose Jorge Hinojosa Primo. At bottom right is the ergonomic Zerk chair, which features a microfiber cover and a urethane foam filling priced at $150.
The Nethrone (Classic)
The Nethrone work/gaming station has fully adjustable mounts for a keyboard, a monitor, two foot-rest positions, and a reclining seat, all handled via remote control. The seat is an ergonomic massage chair, which the company says is based on the design of what you'd find in a fighter aircraft. The Nethrone Classic doesn't come with any gadgets included, so you'll have to supply your own computer components. The Nethrone comes in beige, red, or black, and pricing starts at $2000.
Cinema Beta Home Theater
Talk about a setup. This Cinema Beta home theater design by Jeremy Kipnis includes an 18-foot Stewart Snomatte projection screen and a Sony SRX-S110 digital 4096-by-2160 ultra-high-resolution projector. Kipnis created a custom 8.8-channel audio system that uses sixteen 18-inch subwoofers, ten super tweeters, three center channel speakers, eight THX tower speakers, and 35 amplifiers. The room is also tricked out with a Blu-ray player, a laserdisc player, and a PlayStation 3.
The entire setup is housed in a 26.5-by-33-foot room with a vaulted ceiling that reaches 16 feet at its highest point. For just $6 million, according to Home Theater Design , you can create this ultimate room to play newly announced E3 games titles like Gears of War III or the Xbox 360's new Kinect motion control system. If you've got an extra million or six lying around, you can find out more about how to create the Cinema Beta in your home at Kipnis-Studios.com.
Image credit: Home Theater Design
HotSeats Flight Simulator With Extreme PC
If you're serious about flight simulation, then check out the Flight Simulator Extreme PC Bundle from HotSeats Chassis. This flight simulator comes with a 28-inch high-definition LCD monitor and a Dolby 5.1 surround-sound system with a subwoofer under the seat.
The chassis includes an adjustable flight seat (that can comfortably fit anyone from 3 feet up to 6.5 feet tall) and welded steel pedal mounts. Also in the extreme bundle are the flight yoke and pedals, a Logitech wireless mouse and keyboard, a cup holder, an integrated power strip, and Microsoft Flight Simulator X.
The PC powering the simulator holds an Intel Quad Core 2.4GHz processor, a 512MB nVidia graphics card, and 4GB of DDR2 RAM. It can all be yours for just $4925. If you've already got a PC that meets your needs, you can buy just the controls, seat, chassis, and sound system for a little over $1400 dollars. The HotSeats Flight Simulator is compatible with Playstation 3, Xbox 360, Wii, and PC.
Monsta Gamers Desk
This $699 gaming desk features a 1000-watt 5.1 surround-sound home entertainment system with a subwoofer built right into the leather racing-style seat. The desk component features a TV stand, a second shelf for your gaming equipment, and a display panel for the stereo system. An amplifier is attached to the back of chair, and you also have connections for peripheral equipment like DVD players and a built-in AM/FM digital receiver. The Monsta Gamers Desk comes with a platform to place your steering wheel, joystick, or keyboard. (Note: The Website may be out of stock at times.)
Ultimate Game Chair v3
Kick back and relax in this $500 gaming recliner that includes 12 motion feedback motors built into the chair with three vibration sensation levels that sync with the game. The chair also has two 10-watt 3D stereo speakers built into the headrest, and inputs for stereo headphones and standard audio. The Ultimate Game Chair is compatible with all major gaming systems including Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii, PlayStation Portable, and PCs. You can also share the audio input signal between two Ultimate Game Chairs during two-player gaming sessions.
The Gryoxus full-motion chair from 4th Motion doesn't use any electrical or motorized components like other motion gaming systems. Instead, Gyroxus motion is controlled by the actions you take using the game controller mount at the front of the chair. There's no built-in stereo equipment or extra gadgets, but this bare-bones motion control chair is pretty affordable at just $250, and comes with your choice of a built-in Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3 controller.
These hand-made, custom-built carbon-fiber isolation capsules are the brainchild of industrial designer Lee McCormack and manufactured by Formula 1 specialists McClaren Applied Technologies. Pricing for the Ovei capsules start around $100,000 for your own private game pod customized with a surround-sound system and any gaming or A/V set up your heart desires. The Ovei comes in red, black, white, silver, gray, and gold.
Though not ready for prime time yet, the Ranger9 should start shipping later this year. It features two motion actuators and 31 degrees of motion at each axis (up, down, and side to side). The chair also has a platform for your steering wheel and gear shifter. SimbolRides says its chair supports motion feedback for a variety of racing and flight titles including Need for Speed Undercover, rFactor, and Rise of Flight.
There's no word on pricing, but a comment from SimbolRides on its YouTube channel says it’s hoping to keep the price in "the low 3000s." Keep your eye on SimbolRides.com for more information and check out the Ranger9 chair in action on YouTube. If you're the DIY type, SimbolRides has info and helpful links to get you started on building your own motion chair.
Today's Best Tech Deals
Picked by PCWorld's Editors