The market for home theater seating is full of diversity and options. Features for every need have been accommodated; styles from traditional to uber contemporary satisfy all tastes. This is a market where options abound and we are not even talking about the material.
The Home Theater Seating Arena
There are a number of very prominent brands in this space that offer a wide selection and years of experience in the business of making a recliner or home theater seat. Berkline is probably the most recognized name in home theater furniture. The next is Palliser and Lane Furniture but Coaster, Jaymar Fortress and Bass have all been in this space for many years. Klaussner and Barcalounger have just re-entered the theater seating arena after having no presence at all or a very small offering.
To make matters more complicated, Berkline filed for dissolution in March 2011 and was subsequently purchased by Ashley Furniture. During the period when Berkline was filing for its dissolution and addressing the necessary legal formalities, many of the Berkline models that were successful were 'brought back' to the market by Lane Furniture. Most made in the same factory as the Berkline seats, so essentially the same seats as Berkline but just in a box with a different name on it.
What Happened to those Famous Models
Having been in the industry for close to 10 years now, I get to see all models and understand what really makes them unique or succeed. The fat ones, thins ones, the models and the bellwethers. The mega stars like the Berkline 45090 Matinee, now the Lane 221 model, the B-list celebrities like the Berkline Tangiers 13175, now the Lane 175 model. These are all seats that I have sat in numerous times, turned over and studied the internal organs, checked what resides under the hood and taken out for a test drive. To make matters more complicated, the world of home theater seating has changed dramatically since Berkline's demise and subsequent revival of the brand models by Lane Furniture Company.
There is no question that Berkline (and now Lane Furniture) holds many of my favorites, but so do other manufacturers like Palliser and Jaymar Seating. Each has a star or two - or 5 in the case of Lane and Palliser - and each are worthy of their star status. But, there is one home theater seat star out there that the more I look at, the more I love. It is like that actor you always liked and watched but never thought this is my top 5 until the day you realize he/she is consistently good. His/her style gets better looking with age and is timeless in its handsome good looks. He/she never disappoints.
The Overlooked Favorite
The seat I am talking about is the Headliner – made for TheaterSeatStore by Lane Furniture and displayed in over 500 Best Buy stores nation-wide. It has classic good looks, a huge sized seat which looks better in person than any picture I have ever seen of it. The seat back height is close to 45 inches and extra wide. So, recently I sat down, took off my shoes and powered back the recline mechanism and felt the beauty of this seat. The heavily padded arm rests support my arms in the recline position.
The Headliner's Best Features
It is big. It is beefy. It has great style. I would describe it as transitional, somewhere between traditional and contemporary. The rounded arm rests are large and powerful. The pocket coil seat cushion gives comfort like no other. The classic back and chaise style foot rest form a perfect blend of old and new. Did I mention the excellent warranty that offers a limited lifetime protection on the frame? The Headliner combines a lot of comfort into a large recliner finished with soft protected leathers. It is my new number one.
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