5 Best Astronomy Observing Chairs in 2020 [Ergonomic & Comfortable]

Observing the universe with your own two hands and some equipment is an endlessly fascinating experience. Finding a perfect spot, getting your telescope all set up, and spending hours gazing into the cosmos is likely never to get old. 

However, a commonly overlooked aspect of amateur astronomy is what seating you’ll be using! Sure, you can spend your entire time observing on your feet, but it’s far more comfortable to use a chair—especially if you’re an avid stargazer. Using a cheap chair or no chair at all is pretty hard on your back, which can effectively ruin your observing experience. 

There are plenty of chairs on the market now that are specifically designed for extended stargazing. But which one’s are the best? Does getting an observing chair really matter? Or can you just use a regular chair? We’ll answer all of these questions and more in this guide covering everything you need to know about astro observation chairs!

We Recommend

Best portable option

Starbound Astronomy
Viewing Chair

Most comfortable

Vestil Ergonomic
Worker Chair

Best for Dobsonian

Omegon Astro
Observation Chair

Think ergonomics while observing

Any frequent stargazer knows that standing hunched over a telescope or even sitting on a regular folding chair while gazing at the cosmos is hard on your back. This is particularly noticeable if you’re using a Dobsonian telescope, which requires a great deal of adjusting, making them notorious back-breakers. The same way a higher-quality telescope can enhance your viewing experience, an ergonomic chair will save your back from unnecessary pain.

“Ergonomic” is basically just a fancy way of saying efficient. Ergonomic chairs focus on the natural position of your spine, enforcing proper posture and, ultimately, comfort. They also allow you to sit much longer without needing to get up and move around. 

The easiest way to spot a truly ergonomic chair is how it looks. Some ergonomic chairs look like modified office chairs, but the most posture-efficient chairs often look a little odd, with extra padding in specific locations for additional support or other interesting design choices.

Your observing chair needs to be comfortable

The most important aspect of any observing chair (and any chair for that matter) is comfort. A comfortable chair can mean the difference of waking up with a back-hangover in the morning after a night of observing, and a painless back ready for another long night of astronomical adventure.

What features determine the comfortability of a stargazing chair? Softness, padding, and material durability are some crucial features that affect comfort. Softness and padding are essential for rather obvious reasons—sitting on a padded surface is much better than a stiff board. 

Durable materials are another crucial aspect, as you’ll want something that doesn’t fall apart after a few uses, and can withstand extended periods in cold or warm temperatures. Overall, it’s worth it to get yourself a comfortable chair made or observers.

Astro chair needs to be easily adjustable

Since telescopes require regular adjustment, you’ll want a chair that’s adjustable as well. An astro chair with little to no adjustment capability is about as useful as a fixed telescope! Adjustable chairs are also often collapsible, which is an essential feature if you plan on frequently changing locations.

Adjustable chairs should be easily mobile and compact with a flat or near-flat profile, so it’s easy to lug around. They need a broad range of motion, so you can remain seated at a variety of heights. 

They also shouldn’t have any stiff or unnecessary pins, buttons to push, and no knobs to turn—just something simple and practical. The best adjustable chairs have locking mechanisms that are both easy to navigate (especially in the dark) and stay precisely where you want them to.

Related: 5 Best Astronomy Laser Pointers in 2020 [Green & Blue]

Look for durable and high weight astro chair

After comfort, durability and weight are the next most important aspects of an astronomy chair. Your astro chair needs to be stable in a variety of environments, from a soft, grass-filled yard, to a rocky outcrop on a mountain. 

While using a chair for astronomy isn’t the most labor-intensive, you’ll want something made with durable and resistant materials. You’ll need a chair that doesn’t start falling apart after a few uses outdoors and is resistant to rust or corrosion. 

A simple folding chair is the most common choice and will work for the occasional viewing session, but it’s not an ideal option. If you’re a regular observer, spending some extra money and picking up something better is entirely worthwhile—for both your experience and your back. 

Best astronomy observing chairs

1. Vestil CPRO-800LP Ergonomic Observing Chair

The Vestil CPRO-800LP Ergonomic Observing Chair is one of the finest affordable observing chairs on the market. 

The seat begins at the height of 18 inches and is adjustable up to 33 inches along its axis. 

It’s lightweight and foldable, though the description is a tad misleading, as it doesn’t fold completely flat (about an extra 4-inch profile when folded). 

It mentions a weight limit of 220 lbs, but some users report it being able to hold up to 250 lbs (not recommended though). This chair is a simplistic design, but it works precisely as it’s intended

The padding is a bit thin on the seat itself, though, meaning it’s not the most comfortable observing chair around.

Check the price of Vestil CPRO-800LP Ergonomic Observing Chair here

What we liked

  • Portable
  • Easy to adjust
  • High back for support
  • Reasonable price
  • Ergonomic design

What we didn’t like

  • Doesn’t fold all the way down
  • Not the most comfortable option on the market

Material: Steel
Weight: 20 lb
Adjustable height: 18.5” to 33″
Dimensions: 13” x 20”
Weight limit: up to 250 lb (220 lb is manufacturer recommended limit)

2. Starbound Astronomy Viewing Chair

The Starbound Astronomy Viewing Chair is a heavy-duty and sturdy chair perfect for the traveling astronomer. 

The frame material is thick steel, capable of withstanding harsh weather and is resistant to corrosion or rust. 

The seat is highly adjustable, from 9 inches up to 32 inches, which allows easy viewing for a wide variety of telescope eyepiece heights. 

The padding on the seat itself is thick and durable, making it both comfortable and suitable for varying weather conditions. The bottom rear of the frame is a splayed design, providing easy stability for many locations. 

Unlike our previous entry, the Starbound Astronomy Viewing Chair can be fully collapsed, though you do have to take the seat off first. Overall, this seat is a sturdy and comfortable telescope observing chair, but it is priced a bit higher than others.

Check the price of Starbound Astronomy Viewing Chair here

What we liked

  • Comfortable cushioning
  • Stable
  • High back for support
  • Durable steel frame
  • Ergonomic design

What we didn’t like

  • A higher pricepoint
  • White version may show dirt/dings

Material: Steel
Weight: 18 lb
Adjustable height: 9″ to 32″
Dimensions: 23” x 42”
Weight limit: 300 lb

3. Omegon Astro Observation Chair

The Omegon Astro Observation Chair is ideal for use with a Dobsonian telescope. 

The seat is thick (5 cm) and comfortable, and it’s adjustable from a starting point of 12 inches up to 34 inches. 

The chair itself is made from steel and is quite sturdy and durable, making it suitable for extended outside use

The seat is adjustable using a handle, which is incredibly easy to operate when it’s dark out. 

The bottom of the chair has a splayed design on both ends, which provides additional stability on uneven terrain. 

The bottom back of the chair also has wheels, making it easy to haul around. The one downside is its foldability—the seat doesn’t actually fold with the rest of the frame. So, with the seat removed, the chair has about a six-inch profile, but without it removed, pushes the profile up to around two feet.

Check the price of Omegon Astro Observation Chair here

What we liked

  • Made specifically for Dobsonian telescopes (or any telescope with eyepieces on the back, viewing-end)
  • Thick cushioning (50 mm)
  • Significant adjustable range
  • Lightweight
  • Reasonable price

What we didn’t like

  • Seat doesn’t fold with the frame

Material: Steel
Weight: 16.5 lb
Adjustable height: 12″ to 34″)
Dimensions: 37” x 18” x 26”
Weight limit: 200 lb

4. Berlebach B500680 Nix II Observing Chair

The Berlebach B500680 Nix II Observing Chair is a unique take on skywatcher observing chairs. 

It’s essentially the same style as our previous entries, except it’s crafted almost entirely from ash wood

It’s adjustable from 10 to 19 inches in 1-inch increments. 

The seat is held with a belt locking system, allowing easy adjustment

While the material is durable and capable of withstanding most weather situations, the cushioning itself is fairly thin and not the most comfortable. 

The chair folds down for easy portability, and it’s an incredibly lightweight design. It supports weights up to 264 lbs, and the wooden legs come with protective foot covers.

Check the price of Berlebach B500680 Nix II Observing Chair here

What we liked

  • Unique wood design
  • Easily adjustable in 1-inch increments
  • Portable
  • Ergonomic

What we didn’t like

  • Less adjustable height
  • May not the most comfortable seat for everyone

Material: Ash Wood
Weight: 15.55 lb
Adjustable height: 10″ to 39″
Dimensions: 18” x 40.6”
Weight limit: 264 lb

5. Vestil CPRO-600 Ergonomic Worker Chair

The Vestil Worker Chair isn’t exactly intended for astronomical viewing, though it’s perfect for the job

It has an adjustable seat ranging from 13 to 34 inches, with 2” increments. 

Though it can be a little hard to adjust in the dark, the seat has four rubber shocks that tilt forward, left, and right to help maintain posture when you’re moving around in your seat.  

The Starbound Viewing Chair has the most comfortable seat on this list, but this seat comes close (even though it looks thin). The bottom of the chair has a footrest for its higher ranges, allowing you to maintain your correct posture even at its top height of 34”. 

It has a splayed design on both ends of the feet, making it extremely stable for a variety of environments. The chair’s also entirely foldable and portable with a 4” profile, though, at 22 lbs, it is a bit heavy to lug around.

Overall, the Vestil CPRO-600 is an excellent choice for any amateur astronomer, and it’s reasonably priced. It’s also perfect for anyone who is upgrading their telescope to a larger aperture as well, particularly if you’ll be using a Dobsonian telescope!

Check the price of Vestil CPRO-600 Ergonomic Worker Chair here

What we liked

  • Extremely stable
  • High adjustment range
  • High-quality materials
  • Ergonomic design
  • Very comfortable

What we didn’t like

  • Can be hard to adjust in the dark
  • Is a bit heavy
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