In a Nutshell:
The AmazonBasics Big & Tall Executive Chair is a great option for people struggling to find a good big and tall chair that will fit them—recommended for anyone on a budget looking for a low-priced leather-upholstered chair.
Value for the Money
Amazon makes a staggering array of products, selling them right alongside companies that specialize in specific product classes. Among other things, they make a line of surprisingly good quality office furniture, and they haven’t forgotten to include some products aimed squarely at the big and tall segment of the market.
Most of Amazon’s products are quite good, and this office chair is no exception. As you’ll see, AmazonBasics Big and Tall Executive chair does have its limitations and shortcomings. Still, if you’re on a budget, it’s well worth considering and definitely belongs on your shortlist.
In the following sections, we’ll go over the chair in detail, telling you its best and worst features, so you’ll have all the information you need to make an informed purchasing decision. If that sounds good to you, let’s get right to it!
An Overview of the AmazonBasics Big and Tall Executive Chair
Unobtrusive. That’s the first word that will probably spring to mind when you see the AmazonBasics Big and Tall Executive chair for the first time. Amazon didn’t take any chances here where the design was concerned, opting for a tried but true approach by designing an office chair along purely conventional lines.
That’s not a bad thing, and the result is a reasonably good-looking chair but unobtrusive enough that it won’t stand out in whatever room you put it in. Note that the big and tall office chair is offered in either black or brown, which makes it even easier to blend seamlessly with the other furniture in your home, whatever your décor scheme.
Here are the chair’s basic stats:
There are a couple of important points to talk about here. First, we love that this chair features a wide, deep seat and has a height adjustment range that’s ideal for big and tall users. Second, the weight limit is surprisingly modest, clocking in at just 350 pounds.
This is certainly acceptable for a big and tall chair, but plenty of other products on the market far outstrip it in this regard. While it’s suitable for a big chunk of the big and tall market, that limitation won’t make it the right chair for everyone.
We’ll have more to say about some of the other stats in the next section.
There’s a surprising amount to talk about in this section because, for such a modestly priced chair, the AmazonBasics Big and Tall offers quite a lot in the way of adjustability.
As we mentioned in the last section, the height adjustment range puts this chair firmly in the big and tall category, with a base height of just over 18”, going all the way up to 22.25”. That’s impressive and, in our view, comes pretty close to the ideal.
Swivel & Recline Function
Then there’s the 360-swivel and recline, both of which are pretty standard on office chairs these days. What we liked about the recline function is that the chair reclines to a maximum of 135 degrees.
A significant percentage of lower-priced chairs have a more limited recline range, and some of them don’t recline at all; they merely rock back and forth slightly. Kudos to Amazon on this front!
Adjustable Lumbar Support
The big thing to talk about here, though, is the fact that this chair not only offers lumbar support, but the lumbar support system is adjustable.
That’s huge. It allows you to customize your seating experience without sacrificing the chair’s most crucial ergonomic feature. We love it. Honestly, in our view, this should be a standard feature in every office chair made. Sadly, it’s not, but it would be awesome if it were!
Turning our attention to comfort, we find that this model comes up a bit short. Granted, it’s far from being uncomfortable and, in fact, is solidly above average. Still, it’s not at all difficult to find a more comfortable office chair on the market, even among comparably priced offerings.
The padding used in the AmazonBasics Big and Tall is conventional block foam covered over by single-stitched bonded leather.
There’s enough block foam to be comfortable, but it is not what we’d describe as generous. Given that, if you’re near the top end of the chair’s maximum supported user weight and use the chair for extended periods every day, you’ll find that the foam will begin to break down much more quickly than you’d like.
The other thing that detracts from the chair’s comfort is the fact that it’s upholstered in leather. It looks pretty, no doubt, but there’s a problem. If you spend more than a couple of hours in the chair at a time, you’ll get hot and start sweating because the leather doesn’t breathe.
The company has taken one important step to try and counter that fact. The seat back is perforated, which does allow for better airflow.
We rate it as a decent try, but unfortunately, it’s just not enough to improve the breathability markedly. Worse, remember that this is bonded leather, which means that it’s real leather, but fashioned from scraps that have been fused together.
Bonded leather isn’t as strong or durable as genuine grain leather, and when you perforate it, it gets even weaker.
Even in the best of cases, bonded leather doesn’t tend to stand up well to the rigors of heavy daily use. After about a year, you can expect it to start peeling and ultimately splitting. This will happen where the leather is weakest, which typically means the stitching and those areas of perforation.
Double stitching would have helped some at the seams, but that’s more expensive and would have raised the price of the chair. Unfortunately, nothing will help where the perforated seatback is concerned.
That was a design decision that will, unfortunately, shorten the useful life of the upholstery. In our view, it just wasn’t a worthy trade-off because it doesn’t do enough to improve the breathability of the seatback.
It probably comes as no surprise, but when you get the box delivered to your door, you’ll find the chair inside in a number of large pieces, so you’ll have to spend some time putting it together before you can use it.
One of the things Amazon is very good at, though, is providing clear instructions, which makes the assembly a straightforward process. You won’t find yourself scratching your head at any point, trying to figure out how the pieces fit together.
You can expect the process to take 30-45 minutes from start to finish, although you’re bound to run into a few problematic moments if you’re assembling it on your own. You can cut the assembly time by about ten minutes and save yourself some frustration if you have an extra pair of hands helping you.
Pros & Cons of the AmazonBasics Big & Tall Executive Chair
The AmazonBasics big and tall executive chair is certainly capable, but it’s not perfect. Its key selling points are its low cost and surprising adjustability.
Having said that, though, it’s got a relatively modest upper weight limit for a big and tall chair (350 pounds), and it’s clad in bonded leather, which means it’s not ideally suited for the rigors of heavy daily use.
Kudos to the company for making an effort to make the seat back more breathable, but at the end of the day, this is still a leather office chair, and you’ll find yourself sweating if you sit in it for long periods.
You’ll also find that the bonded leather just doesn’t stand up well over time. It will show its age very quickly (peeling and cracking), especially if you plan to use it for several hours a day.
AmazonBasics Big and Tall Executive Chair Review Conclusion
This isn’t the strongest office chair in the Amazon Basics product lineup, but it’s still a cut above and offered by a company with an impeccable track record for service and support.
On that basis, we provisionally recommend the AmazonBasics Big and Tall Executive Chair. It’s ideal for big and tall folk who are looking for a good office chair for light to moderate daily use, provided that you fall within its recommended weight limit.
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