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Hi All, I am a faithful follower of this thread since the beginning in 2014. It's finally time to replace our tired 15 year old, cloth covered Palliser sectional that has served us well through 2 boys, now grown and on thier own.. We've looked through our local stores in San Diego and the trend with sectionals seems to be going to much wider seats with very thick arms (our current one has 24" seats) which limits out configuration options with the space we have in our family/theater room. Replacing what we have now in leather with a special order from Palliser would be over $6k.

I've been looking at the Southampton for a while as I think it would suit both me (6'2" 350#) and my wife (5'7"). However, we are really stuggling with ordering sight unseen. Does anyone in the San Diego or SoCal area have Southamptons or Hamiltons they would be willing to demo? We've even tossed the idea of flying out to Chicago to see them ($337 RT on SW) but that kinda seems extreme. Of course if I could get good tickets to Hamilton in Chicago, she might go for it ;)
@MGar This probably won't help, but I just visited their showroom on Saturday.

They had all models of chairs on display, minus a new one they have yet to receive.

TJ helped me and he was super helpful, patient, etc...

The South hamptons are pretty nice, and very comfortable. I believe he said they were the best selling model they sold.

They had them in leather and bonded leather and he had samples of both materials to show me.

Basically you don't want bonded leather, get the "7000" leather/vinyl combo (leather where you sit, vinyl on the backs and sides) I was really impressed with how well the sides matched the seating surface. I believe the arm rests are leather as well. Overall the leather had a nice feel.

I am 5'8 and on the southhamptions I could sit with my feet on the floor, on the Hamiltons, I felt my feet were about an inch off the ground. Hamiltons are pretty big, maybe even "puffy". You may want to ask your 5'7" wife how she would feel about it if her feet didn't touch the floor - would that bother her? If you'll be mostly reclined, it may not, and the hamilton is a big beautiful chair.

Southhamptons were a good all around chair, like a honda accord. They have the basics - power recline, a lit cup holder and a light strip under the chair that you'll want to disconnect if you're a projector user.

The other chair I spent a lot of time in was the Pembroke, which is the one with a power headrest. The head rest 'should' tilt forward, but interestingly, the pembroke's moves up and forward - this could give the seat an extra few inches and might benefit someone who's 6'2" (or taller). for me, I felt the mechanism against my shoulder blades so I kinda ruled out the Pembroke.

Oh and one more thing! I was really surprised that for many of the chairs I tried at HTMarket, through a good part of the recline range. Before I tried them, I was convinced I "Needed" the $899 model with power headrest, but I think I'd be perfectly happy with the southhampton..

That said, I'm still looking, and wish there was an 'easy' button for this.
I'd also be interested in your feedback if you visit 4seating...
 

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Hi All, I am a faithful follower of this thread since the beginning in 2014. It's finally time to replace our tired 15 year old, cloth covered Palliser sectional that has served us well through 2 boys, now grown and on thier own.. We've looked through our local stores in San Diego and the trend with sectionals seems to be going to much wider seats with very thick arms (our current one has 24" seats) which limits out configuration options with the space we have in our family/theater room. Replacing what we have now in leather with a special order from Palliser would be over $6k.

I've been looking at the Southampton for a while as I think it would suit both me (6'2" 350#) and my wife (edit: she's actually 5'4"). However, we are really stuggling with ordering sight unseen. Does anyone in the San Diego or SoCal area have Southamptons or Hamiltons they would be willing to demo? We've even tossed the idea of flying out to Chicago to see them ($337 RT on SW) but that kinda seems extreme. Of course if I could get good tickets to Hamilton in Chicago, she might go for it
The HT design seating is very high quality, when I set out the build this line up, my intention was to build the chairs very similar to the higher quality mfg's using high end components but deliver them at a better value than many manufacturers by selling them directly to the consumer. By buying HT design you don't pay cost of retail distribution which has an extra mark up. So in essence the HT Design uses very similar components and leather to many high end chairs but is offered at a better value.

For example, we build all our chairs with

*Pocketed seat coils, this is basically using 1.8 density foam over each coil, that way the seat last longer and seats evenly over time especially for heavier people
*Legget and platt recline mechs, the recline mech is the most important part other than the seat and we use the best company for that, our competition does not in so cal, leggett and platt last longer than the knock off relcine mechs out there
*Raffel Electronics, we also chose to use the same LED mfg use by big furniture mfg's, Raffel holds patents for home theater seating controls and they are the best, no knock off controls
*Accessories, our accessories are top notch ie wine holder stainless steel not plastic like our competitors. We also offer storage and trays in all our models.
*we also have some nice touches on our seats that you won't find on other brands for instance Hamilton has the real wood feet, Warwick our spacesaver has storage where most spacesaver seats don't, pembroke has a double stitch pattern. In short, we pay attention to the fine details of the seats.

I would suggest if you can't sit in a seat is to request a leather sample from us, we will send them free. You can then compare to your current leather or others.

If you get a chance take a trip to Chicago, Hamilton supposed to be real good but I can tell that our seat is very similar to the couch that you have. One bonus right now if you don't live in Illinois you save sales tax, if you buy in state anywhere they will hit you with tax, which you could use for plane tickets to Ohare, we only 20 minutes from airport.

Regards,
Alan
 

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@Iron Mike, after looking at the 4seating site, the prices really seem way higher for comparable seats to what htmarket offers. We're seriously leaning towards flying out to chicago to check them out.

@basementjack2, your post does help. thanks for sharing your experience. I think we would prefer the southampton as well based on everything we've read.

@HTmarket, Alan, thanks for the detailed response. Your dedication to helping us on the forum as well as the many reviews I've read go a long way with me.
I do have a question for you. Could a southampton row of 4 with love seat in the middle (configuration D) be made up of 2 5301s and 2 5201s? this would allow for rotating the chairs for even wear over time. In looking at the pdf, but the configurations don't really make it clear how they are assembled from the individual pieces.

Thank you all for your responses. Now looking at flights to Midway on SW.
 

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@

[MENTION=7474985]basementjack2
, your post does help. thanks for sharing your experience. I think we would prefer the southampton as well based on everything we've read.

@HTmarket, Alan, thanks for the detailed response. Your dedication to helping us on the forum as well as the many reviews I've read go a long way with me.
I do have a question for you. Could a southampton row of 4 with love seat in the middle (configuration D) be made up of 2 5301s and 2 5201s? this would allow for rotating the chairs for even wear over time. In looking at the pdf, but the configurations don't really make it clear how they are assembled from the individual pieces.

Thank you all for your responses. Now looking at flights to Midway on SW.
We can configure the chairs that way for you. Just request when ordering them using those pieces. I can tell you our seats are built better than our so cal competitor, as we use higher end components. We are not far from Midway either about 40 minutes.

Regards,
Alan
 

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@MGar

You can take "THE L" from midway to downtown and then switch to the "RED" Line north to the Berwyn stop, you would be about 3 city blocks from HTMarket.

A rental obviously works too, just more expensive and most airports levy a high rental car tax (I remember paying 100% tax on one vacation!)
 

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@MGar

You can take "THE L" from midway to downtown and then switch to the "RED" Line north to the Berwyn stop, you would be about 3 city blocks from HTMarket.

A rental obviously works too, just more expensive and most airports levy a high rental car tax (I remember paying 100% tax on one vacation!)
Thanks for the tip! I've taken the L before when I was in there for training a few years back.
 

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@Iron Mike , after looking at the 4seating site, the prices really seem way higher for comparable seats to what htmarket offers. We're seriously leaning towards flying out to chicago to check them out.
if u can afford it, u should def fly out, U should also check out offerings from other brands such as Octane etc etc etc, although I was not able to find Octane seating here in any Magnolia Best Buy...

But, re 4seating, u'd be a fool not to check them out. U're located in SoCal, they got the biggest showroom in the US - or one of the biggest - many, many models, not just Seatcraft.

Again: u NEED TO personally sit in this stuff. I did not end up buying what I thought I would. Matter of fact (after test sitting), I preferred 3 other models over what I thought would be my choice.

Re prices: they're all the same across the brands, 4seating got lower end models as well. They gave me a very good deal, plus free white glove delivery. Paid less than what the somwhat equivalent premium HT chairs would have costed, although the seats I bought from Seatcraft have no counterpart (yet) on the HT side anyways... they are brand new Seatcraft models, I think only 4seating has them (for the first 6 months)...

Also, just a note: all of this stuff comes from the exact same factories in Asia... same features, same stuff.

One thing that sounded like a plus on the HT side: they claim that the seating area can be replaced, if needed. The Seatcraft chairs don't have that option, but they can be serviced. 4seating has a very, very affordable 3rd party warranty that covers literally anything for 5 years...

Another thing to keep in mind - generally speaking: good feedback from AVS users is naturally welcome and very helpful. BUT.... (!).... and this is key: many of them did not test sit various models from different brands (as u can read here, many ordered blind). Do they like their HT chairs ? Appears so, I'm sure they're comfortable. But would they've picked HT chairs if they would have personally tested HT, Octane, Setacraft... ? Possible, maybe not. But u cannot compare and or make the best possible decision what u have not personally tested.

Like I said 4seating showroom alone has x amount of brands, plus x models for each brand... HT in Chi has only their stuff.

If u can afford, I would test sit all of the brands in question. Even between some of the main features: adjustable headrest, lumbar support etc etc etc there's various implementation (by the brands or models), some of the higher end models have better mechanics (quieter, faster) and or the feature is differently implemented (electronic headrest functionality, I preferred some over others)... u wanna personally test all of that....

Since u are in SoCal, it's a no-brainer.

Good luck, let us know what u end up with !
 

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HT design seats are not made in the same factory as the one you ended up with, and the components are different underneath. We use the pocketed seat coils, Leggett and platt recline mechs raffel electronics, okin actuator motors. I know that the seatcraft does not use those components and it's made in a totally different factory. Their controls are different, their recline mech is different etc. So it's not just how it sits in a showroom that counts, it's what underneath that counts and the electronics and motors etc. We use okin actuators the best, not sure what they use. I agree it's good to compare everything but at the end of the day it's not even easy to compare even if you sit in everything possible as it is what's underneath the chair that counts.

That being said, it's not that tough to choose seating online anymore as there is lots of information out there, videos, swatches you can order etc. Plus many testimonials and reviews. All our review information is verbatim from customers, no edits etc. We also will take care of the customers if there is shipping damage etc, and that's the a big deal believe me as 1 out of 7 orders have some shipping damage.

Seatcraft/octane are mass market guys, they are trying to move tons of seats hence there not putting the same into each seat. HT design is more of niche boutique player, with a few less styles but styles that meet the need of a home theater customer. We put the best into each seat underneath so that's our value proposition.

At the end of the day getting the mass market guys on phone if there is an issue and taking care of problem will be tougher as they are mass maket guys moving seats, once they sold you they want to move on and sell another customer. In contrast, we will help the customer more upfront and after the sale. So it's our service that's a differentiator plus the build of the seat. If you want the best seat and service we are the company to go with. After 18 years of owning HTmarket.com, I have seen it all, brands (ie berkline) and web sites (ie stargate) come and go, and we will be around to help you out as proven by our longevity.

Regards,
Alan Hutchinson
HTmarket.com

PS: I don't mind comparing other brands but I would like to keep this more on topic as HT design not other brand comparisons, if you want to do that a new thread might work if your comparing brands.
 

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^^^

above post, a few statements make no sense...

of course it is very hard to "compare seating furniture online", as the most important thing is sitting comfort, which naturally u would have to experience urself, as there is no scientific measure to universally compare any of that.

having said that, not saying that HT furniture is not as good and/or possibly "better", I have not personally tested them.

re mechanics: whatever u state is impossible for us to verify and/or compare... but again, what I've tested from the high end (not so much the low end) Seatcraft models was very quiet, very smooth very fast. U move seat in position. and then u sit for longer period of time. ergo, sitting comfort is the most important factor, which would include lumbar options, seating area dimensions and headrest adjustability.

That showroom has a few other brands, so it was easy to compare and see the different offerings (and the differences in mechanics etc).

In any case, just providing info for another AVS member.

U could naturally (after 18 years) get ur stuff together and open a showroom in Cali, and we wouldn't have this conversation... ;-)))))
 

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^^^

above post, a few statements make no sense...

of course it is very hard to "compare seating furniture online", as the most important thing is sitting comfort, which naturally u would have to experience urself, as there is no scientific measure to universally compare any of that.

having said that, not saying that HT furniture is not as good and/or possibly "better", I have not personally tested them.

In any case, just providing info for another AVS member.

U could naturally (after 18 years) get ur stuff together and open a showroom in Cali, and we wouldn't have this conversation... ;-)))))
I beg to differ as if everybody had to test drive the seat or sit in a seat before buying then we would be out of business, based on the data I have 95% the people that buy from us never actually come to our showroom or sit in our seats. So if you were correct on all peoples purchasing behavior I would not have a business. You are correct for yourself and for some others who must purchase that way but remember my kids and your kids don't purchase in stores like this anymore, they buy on their mobile phones.

I totally agree that if you can go sit in a showroom with theater seats then do it, but the practicality of that is hard, as theater seats are not widely shown at retail. For instance if I live in Iowa where do I go sit in theater seats. You happen to live near one of the online sellers so it worked for you. Best buy for years has tried to sell theater seats with our competitor, never has worked out, as most of the time the employees at best buy are not trained to show seats nor do they care. The one in Chicago here has some of them, and I walked in and the showroom model was beat up and inoperable.

I guess what I am saying is sure sit in seats if you can I would recommend it. We do recommend for anybody in the area or is coming through to come in we had 2 customers in yesterday AM but practically speaking most people don't purchase that way they compare online using all the information available to them and then buy without testing them. The information out there is pretty solid. If everybody had to test drive the seats first then it would be come an in person retail experience only then prices would be up about 20% as costs to maintain distribution and showroom would add about 20% to cost. The other thing is that retail furniture stores don't know how to sell theater seats, the guys at Berkline could never get them to do it correctly same with Palliser who primarily sells through bricks and mortar. One of the reasons people do buy online because price points are so much better than brick and mortar so they take a measured risk as it's 20 to 30% less to buy online.

So I guess we are kind of both right on this, sure it's best if you can go sit in seats go do it but the reality many people feel just as comfortable buying them without physically sitting in them. The demographics and purchasing behavior is now skewing to online just ask Amazon, the next thing they are doing is pushing into furniture and going after wayfair who sells a 2 billion online in furniture. The younger generation buys so much differently then my parents and most people my age I am 55. Personally I buy everything online, I hate going into stores.

The theater seat business has always been a good online business albeit not a huge market. It's never really has been a brick and mortar retail business.

Regards,
Alan Hutchinson
HTmarket.com

PS: I had a guy who lived literally 4 miles from our showroom, he never came in and bought 8 seats online, and he lived 4 miles from us.
 

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well, the point was not that "u have to" before u buy, point was that it is strongly recommended (if u can). The other AVS member is located close to a showroom, only makes sense IMO.

People buying blindly from u (or other dealers), does not change the fact that if they would have had the time and money, and test sit all options, some would have decided differently and vice versa. That is... coming to better overall decision to whatever is their personal preference. Ergo: money best spent.

Having said that, I somewhat strongly doubt that there are drastic differences (sit comfort wise) between the top of the line models of each of the brands.
 

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If you are in the dark on theater seating, we can help you see the light

People buying blindly from u (or other dealers),
At the risk of beating a dead horse, people are not buying blindly. There is tons of information out there on theater seats whether on retail sites, you tube, facebook, avsforum etc short of of actually sitting in them.

End discussion I hope, on buying habits of people.

For all those blind buyers out there, call us we can help you see the light of day.

Regards,
Alan
 

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To briefly touch on the discussion at hand in regards to "buying blind". I had never purchased any electronics sight unseen before I found AVS 14yrs ago. Since then, I've purchased multiple projectors, and countless other HT items costing thousands of dollars over the years from ID companies that were dependent on reviews and word of mouth from forums like these. I could have easily gone to the local brick and mortar stores and paid twice as much for the "convenience" of seeing/touching the aforementioned products but I've developed a high level of trust for AVSforum and many of its members so I'm comfortable in making what I feel is an informed and educated decision based on user feedback.

And yes, my blind purchases include buying 6 ht seats in a group buy. No regrets whatsoever, and the price was unbeatable

Away from that topic. I do have a question regarding the floor to armrest height on the Warwick and Pembroke chairs if possible.

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^^^

turn ur brain on, dude...

buying electronics off reviews is not the same as buying furniture... HT electronics can easily be bought off reviews and/or specs, all of mine are being calibrated anyways, if they don't perform as expected, I return... simple as that.

why don't u try to return ur bulky HT furniture, if u don't like the comfort level, and/or seat dimensions are not what u thought etc etc etc etc etc

ain't gonna happen, u're stuck
 

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^^^

turn ur brain on, dude...

buying electronics off reviews is not the same as buying furniture... HT electronics can easily be bought off reviews and/or specs, all of mine are being calibrated anyways, if they don't perform as expected, I return... simple as that.

why don't u try to return ur bulky HT furniture, if u don't like the comfort level, and/or seat dimensions are not what u thought etc etc etc etc etc

ain't gonna happen, u're stuck
Apparently the world only works the way YOU think it does ....dude. So I'll stop wasting my bandwidth & let you continue to be right about everything in your little mind.
 

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Apparently the world only works the way YOU think it does ....dude. So I'll stop wasting my bandwidth & let you continue to be right about everything in your little mind.
;-)))) man, are u naive.
 

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And you're obnoxious. Hooray for figuring each other out
Let's stop derailing this thread. If you have more opinions, feel free to PM me so I can ignore you in private.
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well.... john boy... then why do u keep derailing ?

and why are u wasting more "bandwidth"... I can only assume that if that is a concern for u in 2018, u indeed bought ur electronics also "blindly".... ;-)))))

ah, full circle.

good night, john boy.

P.S.: and maybe next time... just maybe... read the actual posts and statements that were made... saves u some time and bandwidth of sucking up in pointless posts.
 

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Finally placed my order Friday, after about a year’s worth of research on home theater seating. I downloaded every spec sheet, watched almost every video on the site, drew up a hundred different designs of every configuration I could think of.

It was time to order and I decided to call in rather than order off the site, and I’m glad I did. TJ patiently answered every question I had, and he in turn asked me several questions before making a recommendation - truly it was a mini consulting engagement more than a sales call. He came up with a configuration I had never considered, that wasn’t on the spec sheet nor the site - suggested I lay it out in my room with masking tape to get a feel for whether it was correct or not, then call back. It looks to be perfect based on my mock up.

I highly recommend calling in your order unless you are just 100% sure of exactly what you want.

I’ll post again with pictures and a review when I receive my order, but my review of the sales process is that it was as positive an experience as I have ever had purchasing any product.



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