RThis article looks at the chairs used by the top teams of 2020. Using single-year rankings shows us some of the hottest teams — and chairs — of the moment.
Recently, we covered the gaming chairs used by the top-earning pro esports teams of all time. Among those teams, Secretlab is the dominant brand.
Looking at the best teams in a single year reveals a more varied mix of chair partners. For example, Spacestation Gaming is an up-and-coming squad headquartered in Utah.
Based on 2020 prize money, they ranked fifth overall after winning the Rainbow Six Siege Six Invitational. The SSG team (and their accountant Sabrina) use custom AKRacing gaming chairs.
Beyond the fresh faces are some of the usual top performers like Team Liquid, Team Secret, and TeamSoloMid. The first two teams use Secretlab chairs. TSM uses Herman Miller chairs.
Across the board, prize winnings were down for the year. As with most big-league sports, the pro esports industry had to adjust to pandemic realities in 2020. For example, prize pools for the year were severely impacted when the International 2020 was canceled.
That Dota 2 tourney has the single-largest prize pool of any event. In 2019, the prize pool reached $34 million. In 2020, it would have been even higher.
Official chairs: pro esports teams of 2020
When the International was canceled, it opened the door for smaller teams and tournaments to shine. Here, we look at the chairs used by the top-earning teams of 2020.
Turnso Gaming: no chair partner
2020 winnings: $2,424,828
This Beijing-based squad began in 2017 as TS Gaming. In August 2020, Sina Weibo (China’s biggest social media platform) acquired and renamed the team as Weibo Turnso Gaming.
Despite a light schedule, Turnso topped the 2020 rankings playing in only three Arena of Valor tournaments. Based on the team’s Weibo page, they don’t have an official chair partner.
Dallas Empire: Zipchair
2020 winnings: $1,749,250
Formed in 2019, Dallas Empire is a pro esports Call of Duty team based in Dallas, Texas. The team’s name comes from the lyrics “O Empire wide and glorious, you stand supremely blest,” of Texas state song Texas, Our Texas.
The team’s second-place earnings ranking in 2020 comes as a result of winning the 2020 Call of Duty Championship.
Dallas Empire partners include Jack in the Box, Corsair, and Jack’s Links. In 2019, the team also partnered with Zipchair.
Dallas Empire Zipchair edition
Zipchair is an innovative brand that makes a range of gaming chairs, office chairs, and couch recliners. All have zippered upholstery plus custom branding options. That allows you to maintain a chair using several different logos.
Dallas Empire’s primary colors are black and gold. Its custom team chairs are based on the $399.99 Xpression gaming chair. That model comes with 4D armrests, memory foam pillows, color accent stitching, and support for 350 pounds. Learn more via the link below:
Team Liquid: Secretlab
2020 winnings: $1,600,127
Based on all-time career earnings, Team Liquid is the most successful pro esports team of all time. Headquartered in Holland, the team ranks consistently near the top in most big-ticket tournaments.
Various squads within the specialize in DOTA 2, League of Legends, CS:GO, Fortnite, PUBG, and more. The club has been partnered with Secretlab since April 2020. Its other partners include Honda, Monster Energy, and HyperX.
Team Liquid Edition chairs
Secretlab Team Liquid Edition chairs come in both Omega and Titan variants. The former is for smaller sizes, while the latter fits users 5’9″ (175 com) and up. Check here for a comparison between the two models.
Team Liquid chairs come upholstered in royal blue with white trim accented by liquid gold embroidery. Herringbone stitching on the backrest adds a luxury car aesthetic to the design.
You can also buy the Team Liquid Omega edition for USD $449. Both models are available from Secretlab in America, Canada, the UK, Europe, Singapore, and Australia.
San Francisco Shock: Herman Miller
2020 winnings: $1,555,000
Formed in 2017, the San Francisco Shock competes in the Overwatch League (OWL). The team operates within the league’s Pacific West Division. The Shock are currently the two-time, defending Overwatch League Champions.
In October 2020, the Shock defeated the Seoul Dynasty to win the Overwatch League Grand Finals. There, they earned $1.5 million — all their prize money for the year. It shows how a focus on a single video game can make or break a team’s annual bottom line.
San Francisco Shock partners include Sennheiser, ASUS ROG, and Logitech G. Logitech G collaborated with Herman Miller on an Embody gaming chair. Therefore, it was no surprise when the Shock announced a formal partnership with Herman Miller in July 2020.
Herman Miller Embody gaming chair
Herman Miller collaborated with Logitech to develop the Embody gaming chair. It’s a ‘gamified’ version of Herman Miller’s flagship ergonomic chair. It has all the features of the classic Embody, plus a few extras.
Notables include a multi-layered seat optimized for the more active posture style of esports pros. There are two spring layers, one mat layer, and then a foam layer. Within the foam are copper-infused elements that help the seat stay cool during long sitting sessions.
Over the foam layer is a dark fabric skin with a Logitech G logo on the front of the backrest. On the back is a blue plastic backrest attached to black ‘ribs’ with a central spine. The whole unit adapts in sync with user micro-movements. That provides consistent upright posture support no matter what position the user moves into.
To learn more, check out this Herman Miller X Logitiech G Embody gaming chair review.
You can also buy the Embody classic for $1695. Both models available from Herman Miller for buyers in Canada and the United States.
Spacestation Gaming: AKRacing
2020 winnings: $1,403,008
Founded in 2017, Spacestation Gaming (aka SSG) is headquartered in Utah. In February 2020, they became they won the Rainbow Six Siege Six Invitational in Montreal. That made them the World Champions, earning them a cool million dollars.
The team’s partners include Steelseries, Champion, SCUF Gaming, and Chomps jerky. In January 2021, the team also partnered with AKRacing.
AKRacing SSG special edition
The SSG special edition is a modified AKRacing Core Series LX. It has 3D armrests, 180° recline, and a 5-year warranty.
It’s a dark chair with bright orange trim. SSG logos adorn the front of the chair and the lumbar pillow. An embroidered logo and the SSG team name are also vertically aligned on the back of the chair.
To learn more about AKRacing, check out our AKRacing Brand Review. That covers all AKRacing chairs, including the Core Series LX.
Virtus Pro: no chair partner
2020 winnings: $1,381,915
Formed in 2014, Virtus Pro is a Russian esports team specializing in CS:GO and Dota 2. In 2020, the team competed in 39 tournaments, mainly playing CS:GO.
Virtus Pro partners currently partner with HyperX, Haval, and Fragstore. Their last chair partner was a 1-year deal with DXRacer for the 2019 season. At present, the team doesn’t have an official chair partner.
Even though the partnership has ended, Virtus Pro chairs are still listed on the DXRacer website (but consistently out of stock).
2020 winnings: $1,265,244
G2 Esports was formed in 2014 by former League of Legends pro Carlos “Ocelote” Rodríguez Santiago. Headquartered in Berlin, the team competes in League of Legends, CS:GO, Rocket League, and more.
The team enjoyed a strong 2020 playing League of Legends. That year, they won two LEC titles and reached the semi-finals at the World Championship.
G2 esports partners include Mastercard, BMW, Domino’s, and Adidas. In January 2020, the team also signed a chair deal with Secretlab.
G2 Army of Champions edition
The G2 “Army of Champions Edition” comes upholstered in G2’s signature black and white colors. Embroidered team logos are on the front and rear of the backrest.
The official name of the G2 fanbase, #G2ARMY, is also embroidered on the right backrest shoulder.
Choose the Titan edition if you’re over 5’9″ (175 cm). It has a flat, wide seat that offers plenty of legroom. In comparison, the Omega is a smaller chair rated for users from 5’3″ to 5’11”.
Learn more in our Titan vs Omega comparison. Alternatively, check out our dedicated Secretlab TItan or Omega reviews.
You can also buy the Army of Champions G2 Omega edition for USD $449. Both models are available from Secretlab in North America, the UK, Europe, Singapore, and Australia.
Team SoloMid: Herman Miller
2020 winnings: $1,194,722
Team SoloMid (TSM) is a pro esports organization formed in 2009. Based in LA, the TSM competes in League of Legends, Apex Legends, Valorant, Hearthstone, and more.
TSM partners include Lenovo, General Motors, and Geico. In July 2020, TSM also partnered with Herman Miller to outfit the TSM Performance Center.
Herman Miller Embody gaming chair
TSM played a key role in the development of the new Embody gaming chair. Over two years, the team collaborated with Herman Miller to update the classic Embody. Logitech also collaborated. You can see Logitech’s blue color influence in the final design.
The official name of the chair is the “Herman Miller x Logitech G Embody Gaming chair”. It has a new black skin, added seat padding, and blue color accents inspired by Logitech.
The Embody was part of a larger release of Herman Miller gaming gear. Beyond the Embody, it includes gamified Aeron and Sayle chairs.
There is also a sit-stand Herman Miller desk, plus a high-end monitor desk mount. Check our review of the Herman Miller gaming collection to learn more.
You can also buy the classic Embody for $1635. Both models are available from Herman Miller for customers in Canada and the United States.
Atlanta Faze: Respawn
2020 winnings: $1,187,500
In May, 2019, Atlanta Esports Ventures (AEV) purchased a franchise slot for the Call of Duty League. AEV and FaZe Clan then partnered to form the Atlanta FaZe.
Last year, the Atlanta FaZe topped the Call of Duty season standings with a 26-7 record. That earned them a top on the top-10 earnings list for the year.
Atlanta FaZe partners include GameFuel and Scuf Gaming. In February 2020, the team also signed a chair deal with Respawn.
Respawn Sidewinder chair
The official chair of the Atlanta Faze is the Respawn Sidewinder. It’s a curious choice for a pro team, given the chair’s basic features. However, Respawn is backed by HNI, the second-largest commercial furniture company in North America. Likely, there’s more to this deal than the well-being of the players.
The Respawn Sidewinder has 1D armrests, and a backrest with a small recline to only 107 degrees. It has an ‘integrated’ lumbar support curve built into the backrest, but it’s not adjustable.
The headrest is also integrated, meaning that you can’t adjust it. If interested, check out the Sidewinder chair on Amazon to learn more:
Team Secret: Secretlab
2020 winnings: $1,151,570
This European squad was formed in 2014 by “Puppey” Ivanov and “Cyborgmatt” Bailey. The team specializes in Dota 2. It also competes in Street Fighter, Age of Empires 2, and Rainbow Six Siege.
Ranked 9th overall in career earnings, Team Secret consistently performs well. In 2020, the team placed first overall in 16 competitions.
Team Secret gaming chair
Team Secret edition gaming chairs have a sleek, minimalist design. The chair is upholstered in dark PU leather with white color accents.
Chairs are available in both Titan and Omega versions. Check out our Secretlab brand review for a comparison of those models and the TItan XL.
You can also buy the Team Secret Omega edition for USD $449. Both models available from Secretlab for customers in America, Canada, the UK, Europe, Singapore, and Australia.
Other pro user case studies
This article covers the gaming chairs used by the top-10 esports teams (based on earnings) of 2020. What gaming chairs do pros use in other categories?
Below, we skin through chairs used by the top esports teams of all time. Also find chairs used by the top streamers of 2021, stock traders, and famous pro athletes.
Chairs used by top (all-time) esports teams
Last year, global video game revenue topped $179 billion. That beats the combined revenue of the global movie and North American sports industries. High-level pro esports teams are a key driver of video game popularity.
In 2020, global esports revenues reached $1.1 billion. 75% of overall revenue is from media rights and sponsorships. Only 25% comes from tournament prize winnings.
By winning top tournaments, teams earn exponentially more media income and big-ticket sponsorship opportunities. The top-earning teams of all time are the biggest names and most consistent performers in the industry.
We looked at the top ten teams with official chair partners. Seven of the top-10 use Secretlab gaming chairs. Those include big names like Team Liquid, OG, and Evil Geniuses. The other top teams use DXRacer, Anda Seat, or Vertagear chairs. Read the article to learn more:
Chairs used by top esports streamers
Beyond pro esports players, streamers are one of the most powerful marketing tools for major game publishers. They are the first line of promotion for new games. They’re also essential in helping to maintain high retention levels on existing titles. Because of their huge influence, the chairs that they use are also of great relevance.
These days, Twitch and Youtube are the dominant streaming platforms. Among nine top streamers across both platforms, five use Herman Miller Embody chairs.
Jacksepticeye, Tfue, and xQcOW all use classic Herman Miller Embody chairs. Shroud and Myth both use the Herman Miller X Logitech G Embody gaming chair. Pokimane also makes an appearance as the 6th-most-followed (English-speaking) streamer on Twitch.
Most streamers now using Embody chairs formerly used gaming chairs. In contrast, Pokimane switched from an Embody to a Noblechairs EPIC gaming chair.
Ergonomic chairs used by pro stock traders
What gaming chairs do pro stock traders use? The recent GameStop story was a battle between powerful Wall Street institutions and home-based traders. A few key Wall Street players involved in the story use Herman Miller chairs.
For example, Stephen Cohen is a hedge fund billionaire and owner of the New York Mets. He’s also a longtime user of Herman Miller chairs. On the opposing side, Reddit user DeepF*ckingValue sparked the GameStop rebellion.
He runs a small Youtube investment from his basement. He plays the part of the stereotypical ‘basement troll’ by eating chicken tenders (‘tendies’) to celebrate stock gains. His chair of choice is a Secretlab Titan House Lannister edition.
When the GameStop story broke, many big media outlets reached out to Jordan Belfort (the Wolf of Wall Street) for insight. He firmly sided with the underdogs while sitting in a NAPA leather Secretlab Titan.
Beyond looking at current stock trader chairs, the article also explores trading workstation setups. The keys are a good desk, chair, and multi-monitor setup plan.
Gaming chairs used by pro athletes
Many pro athletes are also hobby gamers. For example, Josh Hart is one of the NBA’s most avid gamers. He is the product ambassador for Mavix, a new ergonomic chair brand.
As another example, football superstar Neymar streams on Twitch using a DXRacer. In Hawaii, UFC featherweight Max Holloway runs a Facebook Gaming channel using a DXRacer Monster Energy special edition.
Check out more gaming chairs used by major league sports stars in 2021:
Among the top-earning esports teams of 2020, three use Secretlab chairs. Two others use Herman Miller Embody gaming chairs. Zipchair, AKRacing, and Respawn are also partnered with top-10 teams for the year.
The two standout brands that come up the most often are Secretlab and Herman Miller. The former is popular among all-time-great esports teams. The latter is equally popular among the top streamers of 2021. If looking for the very best gaming chair or ergonomic task chair on the market, the Secretlab Titan and Herman Miller Embody are the best in each class.
The Titan is Secretlab’s flagship gaming chair. It comes with a 5-year warranty and costs $419-$489. The Embody Herman Miller’s flagship ergonomic task chair. It comes with a 12-year warranty and costs $1695.
Comparing a Titan vs Embody is like comparing a BMW with a Lamborghini. For racing down the Autobahn, the Lamborghini is worth paying extra. But for driving to the supermarket, a BMW would offer much better value for money. Both provide superbly comfortable posture support for long periods. One is more complex and expensive. The other is much cheaper yet with comparable ergonomic benefits. For a full comparison into the two chair types, read this feature: