You might not have given the type of chair you sit on while you play guitar much thought. Well, it turns out that it’s quite an important thing for prolonging the length of your playing and practice time. In this article, we review the best guitar chairs on the market and weigh up all the pro and cons of each one.
If you’re in a rush, here are the products we review. We also throw some stools into the mix too:
At a Glance: Our Choice of the Best Guitar Chairs and Stools on the Market
- Quik Lok DX749
- Fender Custom Shop Pinstripe
- Gator Frameworks
- Pyle PKST70
- K&M Performance
- D’Addario Wooden
Note: Clicking the above links will take you to further information, current prices and customer reviews on Amazon.
For those of you who aren’t sure yet what you need, read on. In this article, we discuss all the main considerations when it comes to buying a chair, so you make the right decision. Here’s what we cover, feel free to jump to a section of interest or read from top to bottom for maximum effect.
- What is a Guitar Chair?
- Sitting Positions
- Buying Guide – Things to Consider When Buying a Guitar Chair
- Product Round-up & Mini Reviews – Best Guitar Chairs and Stools
- So, Which Should I Choose?
What is a Guitar Chair?
Guitar chairs are a bespoke type of seat that’s designed specifically for use while you play your ax. Sure, you could, in theory, sit anywhere to play it, but for long practice or jamming sessions being comfortable will not only improve your posture it will also help you perform better (your limbs will be in the right place, relative to your instrument). In general, lousy sitting posture can lead to a whole lot of issues. Good position also helps you play better and longer.
For obvious reasons, a stool isn’t as good as a chair for posture. But they have their good points too: they tend to be more padded and hence comfier. The size of the stool may need to vary depending on the guitarist. For example, taller, heavier players may benefit from one that’s higher, with a broader seat – to account for longer leg length, and extra comfort and support while seated. On the other hand, shorter players may benefit from the opposite.
There are three main sitting positions:
- Casual position
- Classical position
- Crossed leg position
Check out this video explaining the difference:
Buying Guide – Things to Consider When Buying a Guitar Chair
Here are some essential features you should consider before buying one:
Do You Need a Backrest?
Guitar stools don’t have a backrest, so if you’re looking for a seat that supports your back and neck, you’ll want to invest in a chair. The main benefit of using one with a backrest is that the extra support provided helps to improve posture and comfort while playing. It’s a good idea to choose one that allows you to adjust its backrest settings. It’s worth mentioning that the one big downside to chairs with backrests is they are a lot bulkier and sometimes more difficult to transport.
Would You Prefer a Collapsible or Solid Frame?
Some seats are portable, while others are built to be relatively stationary. One advantage of having a collapsible one is that it can be packed down after use for ease of transportation to and from gigs and hidden away easily for a tidy music room at home. One disadvantage of collapsible chairs is they can produce squeaks and creeks, which is no good if you need silence while you’re trying to record.
How Important is Adjustable Height?
Guitar chairs and stools come in different shapes and sizes, so it’s worth reading the product description to find out the specific height of the item before buying. One benefit of having an adjustable seat height is that you’re able to adjust it to your height. One downside, though, is that this makes it more unstable than solid framed models.
Built-in Guitar Stand?
Chairs with a built-in stand are convenient for putting your instrument in while you take breaks for your playing, and save the need for a separate stand. One downside of having a built-in stand is you’ll make it bulkier and more difficult to transport. Seats with built-in stands may are probably a better option for people looking to practice at home, rather than using the seat while traveling.
Padded or Hard?
Different chairs and stools offer either soft, padded seats or solid options; the choice depends on what you like best. If you’re going to be practicing or performing for a long time, you’ll probably want at least a little bit of padding for comfort.
Hard seats may be an excellent option for those wanting to maintain a good posture while playing, without sinking into the seat too much. It’s worth looking at the quality of upholstery before you purchase a chair as some cheaper synthetic types rip easily, whereas leather lining is way more durable and long-lasting.
Are you most comfortable playing with your one or both feet raised from the floor? If the answer is yes, a stool or chair with a footrest is best for you. Some footrests are even adjustable, which is good if several players will be using it, as they are able to adjust to suit different heights.
If you’re planning to record using a seat with an adjustable footrest, remember that anything adjustable also has the potential to cause interfering noise due to it’s moving parts.
Depending on the material used to make the product, some stools and chairs are a lot heavier than others. If the model is constructed from steel, for example, it will be much heavier than one which is made from aluminum or plastic.
One benefit of purchasing a lightweight model is that you’ll be able to pick it up and transport it easily to and from gigs while touring. On the other hand, if you’re going to be playing at home or in the same environment most of the time, a heavier more stable option is probably a good investment.
Product Round-up & Mini Reviews – Best Guitar Chairs and Stools
Quik Lok DX749
The Quik Lok DX749 is good looking and simple to use, with adjustable height, foot and backrest settings. Additionally, it features an easy to use, locking pin mechanism to complete its adjustments which folds up for convenient storage.
The Quik Lok DX749 has a good-sized layer of padding in the seat for extra comfort, however, although you can adjust the seat and backrest height, there’s no option of tilt adjustment, so some players may find it’s sitting angle slightly awkward.
Overall, the convenient, pin adjustable technology makes this product most beneficial for gigging musicians or those with less space at home, that need to store their seat away after use.
- Sturdy footrest – This allows most players to sit and play without worrying where to tap their feet. The raised footrest also gives the player freedom to establish all seating positions – Casual, classical and cross-legged.
- Good frame quality – The Quik Lok DX749 holds up to 242 lbs easily, so is well made to hold the weight of average to larger players.
- Convenient and transportable – The pin lock technology means it is effortless and easy to fold away after use.
- Price – The Quik Lok is one of the more expensive chairs on the market, fair weather players might not want to invest that much money.
- Loose or stiff joints – The seat slips slightly forward when larger players use the chair. It’s moving sections also gets stuck in place and may require lubrication.
- Weight – The quality materials used in its frame make this chair quite heavy, so some players may find it hard to move it to and from gigs.
Fender Custom Shop Pinstripe
With a heavy steel frame, this product from Fender allows even the biggest players feel pretty stable while playing. Aesthetically, the soft padded top also looks amazing with the Fender logo blazing across it.
Although it isn’t adjustable, it comes in two height sizes; 24 inches for small to average sized players and 30 inches for those with taller builds. This should allow for most players to purchase a product with a comfortable leg height.
Overall, it’s best suited for Fender fans that are going to be practicing regularly in the same place, due to it not being collapsible and easy to transport.
- Price – Quite cheap compared to other models
- Quality product – The Fender name lives up to its standards, with it’s strong and sturdy, steel frame
- Looks excellent – Will suit any music room
- Confusing instructions – assembly manual is quite tricky for first timers and takes a few head scratches to get it put together
- Not adjustable – Taller or shorter players may find it hard to get a decent playing position, due to the height and footrest not being adjustable
- May become uncomfortable – Hard wooden edges dig into your thighs, and seat padding is only an inch thick, meaning it could be uncomfortable after long playing sessions.
This one sports a modern, black seat with a single built-in stand. Although it’s relatively cheap, it holds up to 300 lbs making it strong enough to hold players of a larger build.
It’s also got a thick padded cushion and a handy, removable backrest, for conversion into a stool. It’s simple, pin lock technology is easy to use when assembling/ disassembling the chair, and it’s rubber no-slip feet keep it stable.
Another bonus is that the stand folds out of the way of your feet, to allow room while you play. Additionally, the whole chair is collapsible, and it’s compact design allows it to be transported and packed away easily.
This is most suited to traveling musos or those with less space at home, due to it’s light-weight – 13.2 lbs and ability to fold away after use.
- Built-in stand – This product features a soft, rubberized stand which holds acoustic, electric and bass guitars, and can be removed for extra room while playing
- Collapsible design – quick release pin technology allows for easy, compact storage<
- Adjustable – Can be converted into a stool by removing the backrest. The backrest also tilts forward and backward to suit different sized players.
- High weight capacity – Can hold players weighing up to 300lbs
- Simple assembly – Only has three parts to assemble, and comes with instructions and hardware included
- Price – Cheap purchase compared to other products
- The stand doesn’t fully support the guitar’s neck – It’s not as stable as most models, this product uses a microsuede patch to hold the neck in place, rather than supportive ‘arms.’
- The seat is a fixed height – Not everyone will find this particular height setting comfortable
- Narrow seat – Larger players may find the Gator Framework’s seat uncomfortable, due to its relatively small size
The Pyle PKST70 is a stylish, folding product with an adjustable padded seat, backrest, and footrest to suit all builds of the player.
It features both a cushioned seat and backrest for comfort so you can play with ease. Additionally, the Pyle PKST70 has footrest support to suit players that like to perform classical style or with their feet raised.
Of enormous benefit is its adjustability. It’s adjustable height footrest, seat and backrest allow the Pyle PKST70 to be used by all ages, shapes, and sizes. To be precise, the seat can adjust to a height of 22.8 inches, the backrest up to 38.2 inches and the footrest to a height of 8.8 inches.
Additionally, the Pyle PKST70 is portable and features a convenient folding design so it can be stored safely when not in use. Its portability allows you to easily transport it to gigs or along with you on your travels.
Aesthetically this one is quite pleasing to the eye, with a professional, slim frame designed to blend into any venue or music room.
The Pyle PKST70 is suited to people looking to travel and gig due to its convenient folding design.
- Extremely adjustable – Footrest, backrest, and seat are all adjustable to good heights, so even the tallest players find it comfortable to play
- Foldable – Can collapse down to a small size for convenient storage and transport to or from gigs
- Great aesthetic – Looks professional and will suit any music room
- Weight – It’s a little more on the big size, weighing 21.7 lbs. Some players may, therefore, find it hard to lift and transport to and from gigs
- Lack of cushioning – Although the Pyle PKST70 has cushioned seats, the padded layer is relatively thin, meaning some players may find this uncomfortable after long periods of use
- No tilt adjustment settings – Although there is the option to increase the height of the footrest and backrest, there is no way to change their angle
This is a very sleek and stylish choice, and will likely look great both in your home and onstage. It’s made from a high-quality steel frame for extra stability and uses a spring-loaded pneumatic mechanism to adjust it’s height settings. The seat is specially designed to relieve pressure on your back and prevent premature tiredness. Another huge bonus is its adjustability – the footrest can adjust, the seat can freely move to any angle, and the seat’s height can be raised from 23.622 inches to 35.433 inches, to allow all sizes of person play comfortably.
Another good thing is its collapsible frame, which can be folded flat making it well suited for players needing a seat that can be conveniently stored and transported.
- Extremely adjustable – height and tilt can be adjusted to suit all sizes.
- Stability – strong steel frame, with spring-loaded clamping knob/pneumatic spring, to support you while you play. Adjustable foot-end caps to ensure that it’s secure on uneven surfaces.
- Quality upholstery – stylish leather seat is well cushioned and angle adjustable, to provide optimal back support while you play
- Foldable – weighs only 13 lbs and uses a two-piece, folding design for convenient storage and easy transport.
- Price – one of the more expensive models on the market
- No back support – This applies to most stools
D’Addario Wooden Stool
The low-cost choice from D’Addario is a good-looking product that will suit any music room or performance by adding a rustic vibe to its environment. This is made out of quality solid wood, is simple to put together and comes with all the necessary parts for assembly.
Although it can’t be folded away for easy transport, it only weighs around 9lb, making it lightweight and easy to pick up to move around your home. It also features an ergonomically designed seat to support you while you play, and has well balanced, non-slip legs for safety.
This is most suited to players shopping on a budget, that like equipment with a fresh aesthetic but won’t be needing to travel to and from gigs.
- Low price – relatively cheap product compared to others on the market
- Pleasing aesthetic – smart wooden finish, with a cool D’Addario logo print, means it will look great in any music room or on stage
- Sturdy material – the wood seat and legs are easy to assemble and are strong and stable enough to support most builds of player
- No cushioning – less comfortable to sit on than other designs
- Not adjustable – may not be an appropriate height for taller or smaller people
So, Which Should I Choose?
Out of the models we reviewed, which do we recommend?
As for chairs, the one by Gator Frameworks has a lot going for it with backrest height and tilt adjustability for comfort – and a handy, built-in guitar stand for convenience. It’s sturdy, and a lightweight frame also makes it ideal for taking to performances – and its collapsibility means that it can be stored away if you need that extra space in your home.
The best overall stool would have to be the K&M Performance Stool, for its height and tilt adjustability. The model’s upholstery is also high-quality leather for a long-lasting, professional finish. While it’s on the expensive side, it does offer optimum posture support and transportability, making it an excellent option for those that can afford it.
Good luck with finding one.
Ged is Founder and Editor-in-chief at Zing Instruments. He’s a guitarist for London based gypsy jazz band ‘Django Mango’ and a lover of all things music. When he’s not ripping up and down the fretboard, he’s tinkering with his ’79 Campervan.