Yesterday I addressed the similarities between these two equally-priced massage chairs. Today I will review the differences:
1. Look/Design – the Osaki OS-4000sports the Inada Sogno look-a-like design that so many new models are using. The IT-8100 has a more traditional massage chair design to it. These chairs would never be mistaken for each other side by side because their looks are so different.
2. # of Airbags – the OS-4000 has 46 compared to only 20 in the IT-8100. The airbags breakdown in the OS-4000 is as follows: 8 in the arms, 14 in the feet, 10 in the calves, 2 in the seat and 2 in the back, 4 in the shoulders, 2 in the headrest, 2 neck, and 2 in the hips. The literature only lists the regions of the body where the airbags in the IT-8100 are laid out: head and neck, arms, buttock and hip, foot and calf.
3. Shoulder Airbags – the OS-4000 has airbags lateral to each shoulder. These airbags are not so much therapeutic in nature as they are designed to “pin” the upper body in while the rollers go up and down the spine. This allows for a greater feeling of intensity of the roller massage because the body can’t be moved forward as readily by the rollers. It is a clever way to increase roller intensity without actually having a roller intensity adjustment.
4. Roller Intensity Adjustment – I have not personally experienced this feature in the OS-4000, but it is listed in the literature. I don’t know if it is an intensity adjustment that can be used in any program or, as with the Osaki OS-7075R, it is a feature only available during kneading in the manual mode…which, quite frankly, is a pretty limited feature in that chair. The IT-8100, as with the IT-8500 and the IT-8200, does not have a roller intensity adjustment feature.
5. Head Airbags – like the IT-8200 and IT-8500, the IT-8100 has airbags in the head pillow. These airbags facilitate a head rotation motion. It inflates on one side, turning the head in the opposite direction, and then inflates the other side, rotating the head to the other side. It is a relaxing feature and can be removed simply by lifting the head pillow up and over the back of the chair. The OS-4000 does not have head airbags.
6. MP3 Player – the IT-8100 has a built-in mp3 music system with a headphone jack for listening. No external speakers. The OS-400o does not have a music system.
7. Foot Rollers – these have become quite popular in more recent massage chair models and the Infinity chairs were the first to exhibit them in multiple models. The IT-8100 integrates the mechanical foot rollers, similar to the IT-8200 and IT-8500. These feel great, by the way!
8. Roller Stroke Length – 29 inches in the IT-8100; 30 inches in the OS-4000. Close but one inch can make a big difference in reach, particularly in the low back.
9. Memory Capability – previously, only the Panasonic chairs boasted this feature, which is the ability of the chair to record a body scan and massage program that you might really like in the IT-8100. I have never used this function in any of my Panasonic chairs, but I do get inquiries about it, so I figured it’s something that people want. The OS-4000 does not have this feature.
Well, that’s about it as far as significant differences between these two chairs go. Of course, you never really know how a chair is going to work for you until you try it out and both of these models are hard to come by in brick-and-mortar stores. But, I think it is safe to say that, in this price range, you will get a pretty good bang for your buck in either chair.
The foot rollers are a big thing right now in the industry. If you love that or want that, the IT-8100 is the way to go. If you love a lot of airbags and more areas of the body being “touched”, then the OS-4000 would be a better choice. All the rest of the differences are slight enough that they may not be “game changers.” You’ll probably be happy with either choice.
Hope this 2-part review helped in some way!
Dr. Alan Weidner