If your daily routine involves spending long hours in front of a PC, you might want to stick around.
Today we are reviewing a chair from Apol. They have several different chair lines to satisfy all budgets, sizes and sitting preferences. There’s an entry level chair which is the most budget friendly, then there’s the best selling line, from which stems a more petite version line and a king sized line. We are going to take a look at the most popular line – the Kraken chair. Its advertised features are a body hugging comfort and support. Who could resist that, right?
Before we got our chair, we had to decide on a crucial detail – fabric or PU leather?
There are pros and cons to both of them so we went with the latter one. The PU leather feels nice to the touch and is reasonably breathable (it has specially designed pores in the seat-base to allow air-flow).
Nonetheless when it gets hot in the room, this material does stick to the skin. It’s just something you need to be mindful of when customising your chair. However if you are constantly living with an AC on like most people in Singapore, then this version is actually going to serve better since it looks more elegant and cleaning is easier than compared to a fabric version.
The general build quality is good and even the small details like the stitching is surprisingly accurate. APOL definitely hasn’t cut corners here. Each element has an embroidered logo on it, giving it a nice and polished look.
The wheels have the right amount of resistance to keep the chair in place but they do roll with ease once we need to move the chair to a different spot or reach something while sitting. That’s a minor nuance that can be very annoying if not done correctly.
The armrest material with its 3D-like pattern is very nice to the touch and looks good. At first we wished the adjustments were more fluid but with time it actually turned out to be a good feature. The 4 directional functions are stiff enough to avoid accidental readjustments.
One of its signature differences is the curvy design that provides a hugging-feeling on the back. Some people like it, some might not. As mentioned before, APOL offers 4 different lines of this chair, starting from classic and going up to XL, so I think it’s just a matter of choosing the right size for your body shape.
Talking about comfort – this chair can be used as is or with 2 pillows that are included in the set. They are made from CloudTech Foam and have a good balance of softness and support. For us, both of the pillows feel comfortable but strangely enough only while using one at a time. Most often I end up using only the headrest pillow.
Normally we don’t get excited about chairs but the multi-functional tilt mechanism was a game changer for us. This is the first of our chairs that has such an option. All of our previous chairs allowed tilting only the backrest, meaning the base of the chair stays in place and you can adjust only the back support. With Kraken the whole chair tilts, including the seat base. It’s one of those things that you never knew you needed until you tried it. The increased comfort when leaning back is a major bonus and the sway is actually helping with creative work process.
APOL has recently released an updated version of the chair where they re-worked the adjustment mechanism. We had the pleasure of testing both versions and the improvement was noticeable straight away. Previously it required a bit of effort to adjust the height, and now it’s buttery smooth and precise. The only issue is that these levers for height and tilting are positioned too flushed with the arm rest pillars, so if you’re sitting up straight, it gets difficult to adjust any of them. The trick here is to lean back and reach from the far end. There are other things that could be improved, for example, the backrest adjustment lever – it nicely fits in a palm and works most of the time, however sometimes it does require a funny wiggle to get it to click in position. Also, occasionally when the chair is put in a reclined position, it starts squeaking. It doesn’t happen all the time so I wouldn’t consider it a big deal.
Right, the main question still stands… Is it comfortable to sit in throughout the day? Apart from the fact that it is too easy to activate the ‘bed mode’ and fall into an endless scroll of cat videos, forgetting that you have ample of actual work to do, yes it is doing exactly what it’s designed to – it gives good support to my back and neck, the seat is deep and comfortable and the level of support can be easily adjusted by simply adding or removing the pillows. It also has a reasonable price and a 2 year warranty. We really like it, even though sometimes it is too cozy to work in.