Razer Enki Gaming Chair review: A comfortable but pricey gaming chair
Razer Enki Gaming Chair review: A comfortable but pricey gaming chair
Razer is back with a new gaming chair for 2021 called the Enki. Unlike Secretlab, which consolidated all of their gaming chairs into one series, the Titan Evo 2022 Series, Razer has instead gone the opposite direction by expanding its gaming chair range with the Enki, which sits (pun intended) right next to 2020’s Iskur. Now, there’s a reason for that.
You see, Razer didn’t design the Enki to be the successor to the Iskur. Rather, the new gaming chair has a different design with a completely new seat base and back rest – it also does away with the Iskur’s signature adjustable lumbar support. So, if you have a weak lower back (like I do) or prefer a gaming chair that has a better ergonomic back rest for your spine, then the Iskur series and Secretlab’s Titan Evo 2022 Series are your better alternatives. But if you prefer a more 'traditional' gaming chair, then the new Razer Enki might just do the job. Let’s take a look.
New seat base, new back rest
In terms of size, the Enki is a whopper – it’s broad, tall and at nearly 28kg, hefty as well. But assembling the chair out of the box is easy, with a huge “leaflet” providing useful step-by-step pictorial instructions clearly. It’s really not complicated at all but if you’re petite or can’t lift very well, then you might require assistance to help carry the seat base and install it onto the spider-shape base. Once that’s done, the Enki is ready for use right away.
At a glance, the Razer Enki might seem similar to last year’s Iskur, with both having very little in the way of branding. You could still tell it’s a Razer product from the chair’s aesthetics though – the luminous green stitching and from the obvious Razer triple-headed snake logo. Styles and aesthetics, especially for a gaming chair, is very much a matter of personal taste. Some might find the almost-black tone monotonous, but I thought overall the Enki has a nice, sleek, subtle design that won’t look out of place in any home style.
Interestingly, for all the love for Chroma, I’m actually surprised Razer hasn’t done the outrageous by incorporating some form of RGB feature for the chair. Fans have been baying Razer’s CEO for an RGB toaster, so why not do one for their latest gaming chair? It’s hard to say. But perhaps the need for a power source put paid to this feature? Who knows?
Sitting on them
Unlike the Razer Iskur, which features a bucket-style seat, the Enki has a more levelled and wider seat base. I personally prefer this design as I tend to sit cross-legged whether I’m gaming or doing work on my computer. But if you sit with your legs down most of the time, then I don’t think you’ll find any key difference in terms of comfort, really. To support your back, the Enki may not have Iskur’s excellent adjustable lumbar support, but in place of it is a built-in lumbar arch that offers a measure of support for your lower back and, which Razer claims, prevents excessive slouching by “encouraging” you to sit in an upright posture.
Now, again this is my own personal experience and yours could be different. As mentioned earlier, I have a weak lower back and my primary form of exercise that is cycling only exacerbated the problem. So, while I don’t find the Enki’s back support to be discomforting nor did it cause me to have back fatigue over long stretches of time, I do find the Razer Iskur and Secretlab’s Titan Evo 2022 gaming chairs, and their respective adjustable lumbar support, to simply be more comfortable for me.
But the one thing that I really do like best about the Enki is the dual-textured EPU synthetic leather used on both the seat base and back rest. The plush padded leather on the seat base has a very soft “velvet-like” finish that gives it a more refined comfort as compared to the PVC leather on the Iskur or Secretlab’s Hybrid Leatherette material. The chair’s edges, on the other hand, uses “Enhanced leather” that Razer says can better withstand wear and tear. That also raises one concern for me; how tough or lasting is the synthetic leather on the Enki? I’ve been using the chair daily for about a month and a half now and the condition still looks new, but whether it will remain like this a year later, only time will tell.
The armrests are still 4D, and adjustable back, forward, side to side and of course up and down. You can even swivel them at three different angles. They are essentially the same armrests you’ll find on the Iskur. And while Secretlab’s Titan Evo 2022’s armrests’ covers are are interchangeable, the ones on Enki cannot. Other adjustments available are standard fare for a gaming chair of this ilk: you can lean back a little without having to adjust anything, recline the back with a level, or you can tilt the chair forward or back and lock it in place. And yes, you can adjust the height too. No surprises here.
Oh, the Razer Enki also comes with a Memory Foam head cushion that seems like it was designed as an after-thought rather than alongside the Enki in an overarching design process. This results in a cushion that does not allow for any height adjustments, feels very oddly out of place, and impossible to use in any comfortable way for me – the base of the cushion overlaps my shoulders and so negates any space available for my neck to rest on. I’m 175cm in height, so a shorter user might find the head cushion fits better and more comfortable to use with. I’ve always considered a comfortable headrest to be a part of good ergonomic design and I do hope for Razer to surprise me in this regard with their next gaming chair. (Update: The top of the line Razer Enki Pro model comes with a magnetic head cushion that is presumably height adjustable).
The Razer Enki, on its own merits, is a wonderful premium gaming chair despite my smallest of gripes with it – it will look great when matched with the rest of your Razer gaming ecosystem. But at S$699.90, I think the Enki is beyond premium when considering that an equal (if not, superior) Secretlab Titan Evo 2022 gaming chair starts from S$579. That’s a big price difference. Even the Razer Iskur, with a better lumbar support, can now be purchased at a discounted S$629. You’re not getting less, but more with either of these gaming chairs over the Enki, and for less.
There’s also a slightly cheaper Razer Enki X model, which comes without the head cushion and with 2D instead of 4D adjustable armrests, at S$599.90. But even this ‘lite’ model feels out of place, price wise, as compared to the other two gaming chairs. Razer’s pricing strategy is quite mind blogging, to be honest.
Ultimately, do I think the Razer Enki is a good and comfortable chair? Unquestionably yes. But do I think you can get better options for your money? Unquestionably, yes too.
If you're a Razer fan and your mind is made up, the Razer Enki is available on Razer's online store. Alternatively, it will soon be available online at the Razer Shopee Mall and Razer Lazada Flagship Store at a later date.