We’ve been hearing that these two Workpro Quantum office chairs (9000 and 12000) are cheaper alternatives to the Herman Miller Aeron. So let’s see just how true that rumor is. And if it is true, which can be a more substantial replacement?
These aren’t necessarily cheap entry-level office chairs but compared to the price of Aeron, you can still say that.
|Seat height range
- The Workpro Quantum 9000 offers a better lumbar support
- Both chairs have a comfortable seat, but the 9000 feels better
- The 12000 tends to push you more forward
- Both chairs have a decent build, but the 9000 feels more steady and durable
- Who will find the 12000 better?
- Go for the 9000 if you want back support similar to the Aeron and you are on a budget
The Workpro Quantum 9000 offers a better lumbar support
These two Workpro Quantum chairs may have the same build and construction, but the 9000 can offer better lumbar support.
These two chairs have different backrest designs. The 9000 has this Y-shaped backrest while the Workpro Quantum 1200 is composed of two separate backrest parts that are fused together. Though the 12000 is not necessarily a bad chair to get if you want one with a supportive backrest, the Y-shaped design of the 9000 feels nicer on the back.
This is one of those simple-looking chairs that feels comfortable to use for 8k or even 10 hours of work.
And if you have tailbone issues, you will not feel any pain with the 9000. This chair also has more adjustability and you can easily be fooled by its simplicity. You will be able to adjust the backrest of the chair. If you need it to go higher so that it will not be in contact with your tailbone, you can go ahead and do that. That’s why this is also a perfect option if you have sciatica or scoliosis. So despite lacking adjustable lumbar support, a lot of people, even those without back issues will find it very comfortable. The Y backrest and the way it was curved lends a very comfortable haven for your back. So you wouldn’t mind if it’s stationary.
The back support of the 12000 is pretty decent. But even if the chair has a higher weight capacity than the 9000, the backrest tends to slide from side to side once a heavier person sits on it.
Also, the 12000 is not a chair that you will find comfortable for more than 5 hours. Sit on it longer, and you’ll feel the back support feeling a bit off. And sit a little while longer and you can have pain on one side of your hip and even your tailbone. So the 12000, since it is cheaper than 9000 can be an alternative if you just need average back support and you will only be sitting on the chair for just a couple of hours. Though you can also adjust the backrest height of the 12000, but most will find the 9000 more comfortable.
Both chairs have a comfortable seat, but the 9000 feels better
The 9000 and the 12200 share a mesh seat. Most mesh chairs may feel too firm when used for a long time. The firm mesh seat can dig into your skin.
And even on some midrange mesh chairs, you can feel the material of the seat underneath.
The seat of these chairs may look thin and we also thought that we’d be feeling the material underneath. But to our surprise, it did not even feel rough. It’s also not too firm and we did not feel a hard plywood or plastic bar underneath,
They also both have a waterfall design. And the frame of the chair will not dig into your skin. We have caveats with most all mesh chairs feeling way too firm on the butt, Workpro chairs are surprisingly not like that. There is foam or padding in between the mesh and the frame that’s why most will find it very comfortable on the butt.
There is just a small issue with the mesh seat of the 12000. At times, you might feel that you are sinking to the center of the chair, so not all will find it comfortable.
These chairs, especially the 9000 can really be deceiving. If we had not sat on the chair we would assume that it feels way too firm and hard on the butt.
The 12000 tends to push you more forward
Another department where the 9000 will be a more comfortable option than the 12000. The 9000 and the 12000 can be cheaper alternatives to the Aeron. But if you hate the pushy feeling you get with the Aeron, you’ll also get that with the 12000. This chair also tends to push your body too forward. So yes it can be a great option for task jobs. But it also makes the chair not amenable to sitting for longer hours.
Also, the backrest does not have any knob that can adjust the tension. So you have no choice but to live with this upright setting. It’s a give it or take it kind of situation.
That of the 9000 feels just right. So if you loathe the too firm Aeron and don’t want to be pushed too close to the desk, then you’d even love this better than the expensive iconic chair.
Both chairs have a decent build, but the 9000 feels more steady and durable
Another caveat of the 12000 is that it can be shaky and unstable at times. We have mentioned above that the backrest can feel awkward or shaky when used by bigger people. We can also say the same with the arms.
They tend to swivel easily. So even if they are locked, they might sway to the side when enough force is used. We can also say that this is one of the more flimsy parts of the chair. So even if the entire unit has a heft to it, these flimsy plastic bits can make the chair less attractive.
The arms of the 9000, on the other hand, are pretty stable. The chair is also quite hefty. Overall, the 9000 feels like a more substantial chair even if it has a lower weight capacity than the 12000. That’s why we don’t recommend the 12000 for bigger dudes even if the seat can accommodate wider hips. The shaking may become more noticeable with the increased weight.
Who will find the 12000 better?
Simply put, if you need to sit upright for most of the time, then the 12000 is a better option than the 9000. The seat is the same so you can also enjoy that same cushioned indulgence.
Thus this is also a decent chair for typing jobs or any task that would require your body to be closer to the desk. But in fairness to the 12000, it is highly adjustable too. So you can still fine-tune the chair according to your preference. Though the arms may be flimsy, skinnier or users of average weight may not encounter this issue that much.
Just note that those with back problems will not find the 12000 comfortable at all.
Go for the 9000 if you want back support similar to the Aeron and you are on a budget
So we can finally say that the 9000 can be a better alternative to the Aeron than the 12000. They both have a comfortable mesh material, while the 12000 has more of a mesh fabric kind of feel. Though comfortable, it’s less comparable to the Aeron.
But keep in mind that since Aeron is still a high-end brand and uses premium materials, the mesh will be more luxurious and more flexible. But the mesh backrest of the 9000 is not left behind. And for half the cost of the Aeron, the slight differences are acceptable.
Also, you can sit longer in the 9000 without feeling that you are being pushed way too forward. This is one advantage it has over Aeron.
The 9000 is surprisingly adjustable, it has tons of ergonomic features. The seat can also recline to three different positions and feels substantially stable. The weight capacity is also true as advertised.
But unlike the Aeron, it doesn’t have too many knobs and levers. The 9000 only has three levers and knobs. So the 9000 will also look less chunky than the Aeron. That’s also the same with the Quantum 12000. Both are more straightforward alternatives. So you will not need to spend hours figuring out how to adjust everything, all are intuitive.
The arms also have a wide range of adjustments. And the list of multiple adjustments of the 9000 far outweighs the price. This is a pretty good value for your money.
But keep in mind that the 9000 comes with soft roller wheels, so if you have hardwood floors, this will scratch them. But if you have a thin pile carpet in your home office, then there’s no need to change the caster wheels to the rollerblade type.
Also, the 9000 feels generally more durable, heftier, more supportive, and better in every way compared to the 12000. Well, unless you need to do task work. So that additional price may well be accounted for.
Oh, also one thing to consider. The customer service of the brand is also one of the worst. This is also one thing you’ll miss out on since Aeron has impeccable customer service.
Related showdown: Office Chair Showdown: Workpro Quantum 9000 vs Herman Miller Aeron