THE VERDICT IN THE END
With its soft, sturdy fabric and dense foam padding, the Cooler Master Caliber X1C is an impressively well-made and comfortable gaming chair.
- With dense foam and a metal base, the construction quality is excellent.
- The dual-material upholstery is made of breathable fabric and visually appealing faux leather.
- The lumbar pillow is deceptively simple, but it is well-designed.
- Some armrest adjustments are difficult to make.
- Apart from light gray, there are no other color options.
Cooler Master also manufactures gaming chairs in addition to PC cases and peripherals. A high-end conventional gaming chair, the Cooler Master Caliber X1C expertly blends breathable fabric with sleek, faux leather upholstery; generously dense and thorough faux padding; a tilt function; and a comprehensive range of armrest adjustments. It is not the cheapest gaming chair, but it is significantly less expensive than Editors’ Choice pick Secretlab Titan EVO and has a similar build quality. The X1C is available for $399. Accordingly, it has been named an Editors’ Choice for high-backed, reclining gaming chairs, joining the Titan EVO on the list.
This model’s fabric is entirely gray, with a black faux leather trim on the sides that mimics the look of carbon fiber. The Cailber X1C is available in two colors: gray and black faux leather. This model is only available in this two-tone color scheme, which is the only one available. However, the Caliber X1 is available in an all-black version (for $50 less), but that model is entirely covered in leatherette and has no fabric on the seat or back. The Secretlab Titan EVO is available in a variety of color options.
Building the Gaming Chair from the Ground Up
It takes a standard amount of time to assemble the chair. Bolt the chair’s back to the seat’s brackets, bolt the armrests and mounting panel to the seat’s underside, insert the casters and gas cylinder into the base, and place the seat on top of the cylinder. Repeat this process for the other two chairs. They are the steps that nearly every gaming chair requires, with the exception of some models that come with mounting panels or armrests already attached. As with Secretlab’s chairs, we would have liked to have seen hard plates covering the screw holes on the back of the chair, as is done with their chairs. This would have alleviated some of the frustration associated with attaching the back to the seat during the assembly process. Nonetheless, it is a minor quibble.
Enhancing Capacity and Making Adjustments
The X1C has a recommended weight limit of 264 pounds (with a maximum weight limit of 330 pounds), and it should be comfortable for people who are between the heights of 5’3″ and 6’3″. The chair’s seat measures 21.3 inches in width and depth, while its back measures 33.9 inches in height and 22.8 inches in width.
With the X1C, you have access to the entire range of gaming chair adjustments. By adjusting the gas cylinder in the base, the seat height can be adjusted between 19.7 and 22.9 inches, which is the standard for any gaming or office chair. With a pull of the lever on the right side of the seat, the X1C’s back can be reclined between 90 and 180 degrees, and the entire chair can be tilted or locked at any angle. The buttons located beneath either armrest can be used to adjust the height, left-right position, left-right angle, and forward-back position of the armrest in either direction. The height and left-right adjustments on the X1C are smooth, but the forward-backward and angle adjustments are quite rigid. In addition, an integrated lumbar cushion with concealed straps can be moved up and down the seat back, or removed entirely if desired.
Fabric, leatherette, and thick foam are all options.
The X1C is constructed of dense foam padding and is upholstered in both faux leather and fabric to provide comfort. The leatherette covers the sides and back of the chair, while Cooler Master’s Cool-In fabric covers the back and seat of the chair, which is where your body would come into contact with the chair. The fabric is breathable and feels delightfully soft without being flimsy in the slightest. In the words of Cooler Master, the chair’s fabric is waterproof and rip-resistant, and it should be able to withstand sweat without difficulty.
The padding is surprisingly durable, consisting of thick foam along the seat, sides, and the forward-facing half of the chair’s back, which makes for a comfortable and supportive sitting experience. Only the back half of the chair back appears to have upholstery and padding that is suspended from the chair back. This is a significant improvement over the R1S, which had padding that was almost entirely suspended; the X1C is firmer, sturdier, and more supportive as a result.
In addition to the built-in but removable lumbar cushion, the X1C comes with a separate head pillow for added comfort. Using the elastic straps on either side, it can be attached to the headrest. It has firm foam padding that is covered in Cool-In fabric.
A comfortable seat, the X1C is built with high-quality materials and strong construction for long-term use. In addition to being pleasantly soft to the touch, the Cool-In fabric is durable enough to withstand everyday wear and tear. It does appear to be quite breathable, though we were unable to put it through a rigorous sweat test in the lab during our visit in January. While the leatherette is mostly restricted to accents that will not be touched by the user while sitting in the chair, it is smooth and tactilely blends well with the fabric.
As with the SecretLab Titan EVO, the padding has a good balance between sheer density and springy give, which is comparable to the foam used in the SecretLab Titan EVO. It doesn’t feel like you’re sitting on a gym mat with a fabric cover or a fluffy pillow, either. Instead, it’s a comfortable middle ground between the two, with softer padding on the top surface of the seat and front-facing surface of the chair back compared to the firmer foam found in the body of those sections. There’s something particularly pleasant about the lumbar cushion, which secures itself firmly to the chair and has the straps disappearing behind a panel that allows the cushion to be easily moved up and down to accommodate different back shapes and sizes. This internal lumbar support does not feature knobs for precise adjustment like the Titan EVO’s external lumbar support, but it is still quite comfortable.
The chair is well-balanced, and it is simple to make the various adjustments that are needed. The extensive armrest adjustments, as well as the ability to rock back in the chair in addition to reclining, are always appreciated. The aluminum base is sturdy, and the casters are free to spin and roll around on their bearings.
Compared with other models
|Caliber R1 Purple||Caliber R1S CM Camo||Caliber R1S Rose White||Caliber R2 Purple||Caliber R2S Kana||Caliber X1|
|Weight Capacity||330 Pound||330 Pound||330 Pound||330 Pound||330 Pound||330 Pound|
|Seat Width x Depth(inches)||22 x 20||22 x 20||22 x 20||22.8 x 21.2||22.8 x 21.2||21.3 x 21.3|
Beautifully crafted, comfortable, and affordably priced
The Caliber X1C gaming chair from Cooler Master has pleasantly surprised us with its comfort, build quality, and thoughtful design. The combination of breathable, soft-but-durable fabric and eye-catching faux leather gives the chair a premium feel, and the chair’s generous capacity and selection of adjustments ensure that most people will find their ideal setting. It has a similar feel to the SecretLab Titan EVO, but it costs a fraction of the price, earning it our Editors’ Choice for video gaming chairs.
You can save money on a gaming chair by choosing one that is less expensive. The Cooler Master Caliber R1S and Razer Enki X are both available for about $100 less than the Caliber X1C, though you will forego the tilting feature and the four-way armrest adjustments. If you prefer a more streamlined, mesh-backed chair, the $319 Respawn Specter is a good, less expensive alternative.