Herman Miller Setu Review: The Easy Ergonomic Chair
Here is my personal review of the new Herman Miller Setu task and desk chair. The brand well know for the universally popular Aeron desk chair has a few other products you should know about. One of them is right for you. In short, in the Herman Miller line of chairs, the Setu is made for simplicity and ease of use. No complex or frustrating levers and micro adjustments. The chair is designed to naturally fit to you, without having to adjust it. An added bonus is that multiple people can enjoy the same seat (no, not at the same time), without having to disturb your unique ergonomic settings.
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Gallery: Herman Miller Setu Chair
The first thing I noticed about the Setu was how little of it there was. I looked it over searching for the fancy machinery that made it work. There was none. Unlike the "engine" that other Herman Miller chairs have, the Setu system is all in the design. A unique duo of flexible spines make the chair move with you. Sit in the chair and it will conform to your back, and reclines with you. The only adjustment you'll find is the seat height, which is operated via a cool trigger-like switch. The lack of excess parts makes the Setu chair incredibly light - not like many other desk chairs that feel as heavy as television sets.
In addition to the flexible frame is the metal support structure and base. The chair feels a lot more solid than the rickety office chair you are probably used to. Over the structure is a flexible quasi-fabric material that is meant to support to your body but also support you. The chair itself took over 5 years to design and perfect by bona fide chair engineers in Germany. Herman Miller on the other hand makes the chairs in the US for the domestic market. Being a global supplier of ergonomic chairs, the most important part of the chair - the flexible spines - are always made in the US, even if other parts of the chair are made in the local market that they are sold.
Sitting in the chair you'll feel a bit like it is made of high-grade, luxury auto parts. Not things you are used to chairs being made out of. This is no coincidence because as the car industry left America, its machinery expertise didn't. As such, Herman Miller uses technology originally made for the auto industry to make you the best possible chairs (and other office furniture as well). Which helps explain why Herman Miller gives the Setu chair a 12 year long limited warranty.
Overall the Setu is fantastically suited to its design. That being a diverse chair made for a flexible office or work environments were more than one person may wish to enjoy the back support comfort of a quality piece of furniture. The same applies to home offices where you may be sharing a space with more than one person. Furthermore, if you are the type that doesn't wish to fiddle with adjustments on a chair, and want something comfortable the first time you sit in it, the Setu is a good option.
Aside from proper ergonomic design by trained engineers and high quality construction, this luxury chair satisfies in that other important area, aesthetics. I must admit that the Setu is a pretty little number. Herman Miller tries to disguise it in shades of gray, but the chair is actually very nice to look at. Actually the chair is designed to come in several colors and with various fabric materials over it. Observe closely the well formed metal and those sections were the sections join to find elegance and love placed into something that a dedicated team spent years on. The ends of the chair have nicely rounded tips that spiral a bit, forming eye pleasing endings. The view from the side of the organic looking flexible spine takes the "industrial" out, of industrial design. For the luxury lover and visual connoisseur, the Setu does not disappoint or require a sacrifice of taste when choosing healthy seating options. Prices for the chair range from about $500 - $880, with the pictured Setu chair being valued at $580.
While the price is more than you might be used to spending on a desk chair. The question I had to ask myself when I first moved to an ergonomic chair, and the question you need to ask is "how long can I afford not to invest in ergonomic tools to use for my many hours of sitting at work?" For me, the answer was clear.
The Setu chair line has a number of models available, for various needs, and in different styles. Visit Herman Miller's Setu page here to learn more.
- Beautiful, high quality material construction.
- Less expensive than some other Herman Miller chairs.
- Light weight and solid feeling.
- Works exactly as designed allowing for easy reclining and comfortable sitting.
- Long warranty from well established company.
- Selling your accountant on the idea may require getting them one to sit on.
- Adjustment free design makes other chairs possibly more suitable for the largest and smallest of people.
- Some might prefer the arm rests to be a bit longer.
Ariel Adams publishes the luxury watch review site aBlogtoRead.com.