The Infinity IT-8500 has been out a couple of years now and has become our most popular selling massage chair. It was originally introduced as a chair that was the same as the Inada Sogno but for half the price, but I could not disagree more with that sentiment. The Sogno is still the cream of the crop, the workmanship of which is second to none. But, the IT-8500 is a fabulous chair for the price and has a great feature-set that seems to appeal to the masses. Here are the main points, in my opinion, that make the IT-8500 such a winner:
This chair is a great bang-for-the-buck. At the time of this writing, the IT-8500 retails for $3995. Yes, that is half the price of the Sogno, but it is a very unique chair in it's own right. Similarly endowed chairs retail for over $4K, some well over $4K. So, although the $3995 price tag might seem rich to some, once you've educated yourself about the feature-set, the competition, and the pricing out there, you will soon realize that the price of the IT-8500 is exceptional for the quality of chair you are getting.
I recently wrote a brief review of the OSIM uDivine, in which I had sat while at Brookstone in the local mall. My summary basically said that for the money (the uDivine was retailing for $3799), the IT-8500 was a way better "deal."
2. Seat "Sway"
The IT-8500 has a seat feature called "Sway" which moves the seat from side to side, ala the Inada Sogno Dreamwave technology. I love this feature as a chiropractor because it introduces a motion to the painful low back that is hard to do on your own without the assistance of a therapist.
3. Neck Massage
The IT-8500 has one of the best neck roller massages of any chair we carry. If you are looking for a firm and deep neck massage, the IT-8500 has it. It's strength even out-duels the neck massage of some models that have the 3D roller technology which allows you to increase the intensity of the rollers. Of course, the IT-8500 is marketed as a deep tissue massage chair, so you get a much more intense and vigorous neck massage, not to mention a deeper massage for the whole spine. This, however, is a deterrent for some as the intensity is a bit much for folks who prefer a more gentle, soothing massage. This chair certainly doesn't hold back on working over your spinal muscles!
If the newer Infinity Iyashi had the same neck massage as the IT-8500, that chair would sell even more than it already does, in my opinion (are you listening, Infinite Therapeutics?)
4. Mechanical Foot Rollers
Foot rollers have become all the rage in the industry at the present time. Last year it was zero gravity, this year it's foot rollers. Next year it may be extended roller tracks into the butt and calves. But for now everyone seems to be looking for the foot rollers and the IT-8500 has them. And, I might add, they are not terribly intense so as to make the user's feet cramp up! It starts off feeling like a bit of a foot tickle, but after a few minutes begins to feel like a very therapeutic foot massage. You can always turn off the foot rollers from the remote control if it gets to be too much. If there is one thing people can be sensitive about it is their feet.
5. Zero Gravity and "Inversion"
As I mentioned in #4 above, the zero gravity was all the rage last year. It still is a commonly sought-after feature because of the comfort level it provides for the user...especially if that user has low back pain. Well, Infinite Therapeutics has incorporated the zero gravity feature into this chair.
This chair even has a second zero gravity position (though I don't consider the second, more reclined position true zero gravity) which many folks like to use because it reclines the user down to almost horizontal and the seat is tilted higher than the typical 30 degrees....thus giving the sensation of inversion, which is one of the selling points of this model. True inversion is a recline past the 180 degree horizontal benchmark, but this chair makes you feel like you are inverted with this second zero gravity position.
6. Music System
Although a music system is often the last thing on a "must have list" for a shopper, the IT-8500 has it. The system is not as convenient as some of the other chairs that simply require you to plug your device into a 3.5mm cord, but the speaker system is among the best when comparing the sound to other chairs. You simply download the music of your choice to a jump drive and then plug that jump drive into a USB port at the back of the chair. The remote control has the play and stop buttons.
7. Look and Feel
The chair has a Sogno-esque body styling, but the chair doesn't seem so large as do other new models. The color options are nice and the chair seems pretty "tidy" in it's appearance. The feel of the chair when you are sitting in it is snug yet not restrictive. If you have really broad shoulders you may feel a bit confined, but the overall fit is quite comfortable.
8. Height Allowances
The IT-8500 is one of the few chairs that handles a body as short as 4'11" and as tall as 6'5". My neighbor at Wasatch Pizza is 6'5" tall and I once asked him to come over to try out the IT-8500 to see if he could fit in it. He obliged me and came over. I was pleasantly surprised to see that it fit him and, according to him, fit him comfortably while still allowing him to get a good neck massage. Tall folks typically feel deprived in most massage chairs when it comes to the neck massage. The rollers just don't go that high. Well, even though the roller track is only about 30" it seems to hit the neck quite well, without compromising what it can do for the low back.
I hope this enlightens you a bit about this popular selling massage chair from Infinite Therapeutics. I have this chair in my showroom and a lot of people end up purchasing it because of the above-mentioned list.
Dr. Alan Weidner