The Killabee 8212 is an impressive, midrange big and tall gaming chair.
Stephen Peddigrew

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Chairs are an often overlooked part of making a proper gaming setup. The reasons for getting the best controller or monitor are obvious, but the benefits of a solid chair aren’t always as clear. After all, you’re just sitting there, and we’ve all spent hours a day on hard plastic chairs at some point or another, so how much can a premium chair really make a difference? The Killabee 8212 is a gaming chair that aims to answer that question by enhancing the comfort and endurance of players for long gaming sessions.

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The most intimidating part of getting a piece of equipment like this is the setup, and the 8212 is no exception. The number of parts it ships with makes it seem like it’ll be a hassle, even more so given that many of the screws ship already placed in the cushions and need to be removed before being re-inserted. However, it’s a relatively painless process. The instruction manual I received was riddled with spelling mistakes and broken English, but the actual process was simple enough that I could follow along with no issues, and the website has clearer instructions and setup videos in case you get hung up on something. Everything you need is included in the box and no step ever gets more complicated than tightening a screw with a hex key. Working with a friend, it took about an hour to put it together, with no major hiccups. While it should be totally possible to put it together by yourself, it’s significantly easier with a second person. Some of the holes are set very deep in the leather and I needed a second set of hands to help apply pressure on the piece and push it into the chair so I could actually thread it properly.

Specs

  • Foam Type: High density sponge
  • Upholstery material: Pu leather
  • Mechanism Type: Full tilt
  • Hydraulics Gas Piston: Explosion-proof gas spring
  • Recline: High-grade spring; 90-155°
  • Base: Heavy duty metal
  • Recommended Height: 5'8" to 6'2"
  • Maximum Load: 400lbs

Once it’s set up, the Killabee 8212 is an impressive piece of equipment. You don’t necessarily sink into the material as you might with some higher-end gaming chairs, but the 8212 is competitively priced as a midrange option and it was more comfortable than I expected for the cost. Honestly, after using a spongier chair for the last few years, I appreciated something with a sturdier support while still being soft enough to be comfortable. There are also just a lot of solid features that add up to make a more convenient experience. The chair is extremely adjustable in terms of recline limit, angle, height, and the arm rests can be rotated in and out, slid forward and backward or moved up and down. Similar to the overall build of the chair, the arm rests aren’t as padded as others I’ve used, but are still sturdy and soft. The rubber wheels have been moving smoothly along my carpet where other wheels have struggled in the past. The backrest wings out slightly below the head to provide support to the shoulders and back, which is a feature I didn’t know I needed but would sorely miss if I had to get rid of it now. It also comes with an optional lumbar support and headrest pillow, which can be intrusive depending on your sitting style, but are great additions for those who use them. My only real complaint with these features is that the headrest pillow simply slaps on with a strap and moves around pretty easily, meaning I have to adjust it often or be careful not to nudge it with my head.

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The 8212 is advertised as a big and tall gaming chair, and it measures up to those standards. The seat is a roomy 21.7” x 20.5”, and the arm rests are supported from the side, giving you extra room to spread your legs (as opposed to chairs I’ve had in the past where the arm rest support come up from the outer edge of the chair and lock your legs in to the width of the seat). The steel frame and sturdy metal base provide great support and the backrest has been super reliable as well. I have a habit of kicking back the recline as hard as I can and staring at the ceiling to help me think, especially when I’m writing, and I haven’t felt any give or wobbliness in the dozens of times I’ve done this in my time with the chair. It’s rated to support up to 400 pounds and recommended for users between 5’8” and 6’2”, which is perhaps on the shorter side of tall, but should suit most users. It’s worth noting that I had a friend who’s about 5’4” test it and there was sufficient customization for her to be enthusiastic about the comfort it provided, so if you need a chair for a shared environment or are just a shorter person looking for extra support and comfort, the 8212 can serve your needs.

Many gaming chairs go for garish designs, covered with logos and bright colours and sharp angles (similar to the way gaming electronics are often outfitted with RGB lights), so I was relieved to see the 8212 go with a more subdued look. There is a blue variant if you want to add some flavour to your chair, but really the gaudiest the 8212 gets is the winged back, and given the actual function it serves, it’s much easier to swallow.

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The Killabee 8212 is a great gaming chair. Its price point is certainly steep, retailing for about $260, but it’s competitive with other chairs in its price range. There’s a swath of customization options, the assembly process is a little laborious but simple, and it provides sturdy support without compromising its comfort.

Verdict
What We Liked . . . Competitively priced Provides great support and comfort Lots of customization options Subdued look What We Didn't Like . . . Headrest pillow is loose and needs regular adjusting
8.5
out of 10
Overall
It’s easy to scoff at paying so much for a simple office chair, but the Killabee 8212 delivers in terms of customization, comfort and support.

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