When investing on an expensive item like a massage chair, it’s only wise to choose something that combines great features and innovative design. After all, massage chairs are becoming more like a status symbol that can spark meaningful conversations whenever people visit your house.
Take Human Touch Novo XT as an example. This massage chair earned a slightly higher rating than Brookstone Recover 3D not only because it has more features, but also due to its attractive unibody design that seems to have been inspired by an expensive sports car.
Novo XT is the company’s recent attempt to enter the high-end market dominated by big players such as Inada and Panasonic. Human Touch was previously known for its cheaper products like the iJoy massage chair line.
So far, how does the Human Touch Novo XT fare against other more popular luxury massage chairs? Let’s find out with this in-depth product review.
Who is it for?
Human Touch Novo XT is not a run-of-the-mill massage chair you can buy at a cheap price. It’s quite expensive, but only because it provides more value than ordinary massage chairs.
In fact, this model won the prestigious ADEX Platinum Award for its unique design. Human Touch massage chairs are also the only chairs officially endorsed by the World Federation of Chiropractic (WFC), an organization composed of chiropractors from all over the globe.
Thanks to its sleek unibody design, Human Touch Novo XT is capable of massaging 60% more of your back. The continuous L-track design enables the massage rollers to extend from your neck all the way down to your buttocks. It’s a perfect treat for your butt whether you’re a work-from-home professional or a cycling enthusiast.
And while it doesn’t have a body scan technology, Novo XT allows its users to choose the height setting from the get go, significantly reducing the time it takes before a massage program starts. If you think the body scan in other massage chairs is a complete waste of time, you’ll definitely love this one.
*34 auto-massage programs, more than any other conventional massage chair. Human Touch Novo XT actually has 7 primary massage programs, namely:
Awake, an invigorating massage to start your day right; Performance, which stimulates blood circulation throughout your body using the Cloud Touch air massage; Energize, a program that provides great stretch from head to toe; Recovery, which focuses more on reducing muscle tension on your neck and shoulders; Demo, which demonstrates all the massage techniques the chair has to offer; and Upper Back as well as Lower Back, programs that target the upper and lower back, respectively.
Each of these primary programs has different variations, namely: Shiatsu, Swedish, Sports and Thai. In addition to these, the Energize program also includes a Stretch variation.
*3 deep tissue programs to choose from: Deep Stretch, which offers deep muscle penetration and stretch for your lower back; Deep Breath that syncs your breath with the movements of the chair; and Deep Soothe, a program that targets acupressure points on your back.
*6 manual massage modes, each of which comes with adjustable intensity and massage zone. Choose from Kneading (small, circular strokes on both sides of your spine), Shiatsu (massage that rolls up and down the sides of your spine), Tap Touch (pulsing and rolling massage), Percussion (alternating tapping strokes similar to the technique in sports medicine), Knead + Perc (combination of kneading and percussion) and Audio Sync (synchronizes the music of your choice with the chair massage).
*Focus of the massage can be customized according to your preference. You can choose full massage to cover your entire back, or you can focus the massage on a single zone/specific spot in your back.
*Zero gravity enables the user to recline the chair to a 30-degree tilt at a touch of a button. Inspired by NASA, zero gravity position elevates your legs higher than the heart to distribute the weight equally across the body, lift the pressure off your spine, improve blood circulation and facilitate a deeper, more invigorating massage. (READ: What is a zero gravity massage chair?)
*Full body stretch achieved through a “bend and stretch” functionality, allowing your legs and spine to recover from fatigue and improve their efficiency.
*Cloud Touch, known in other massage chairs as simply airbags, provides air pressure massage to key areas of the body. When using an auto-massage program, you can easily activate one or more Cloud Touch massage areas and adjust their intensity according to your preference.
*Built-in heat for the lower back. This massage chair uses Human Touch Warm Air Technology® to deliver heat continually to the lumbar area, significantly reducing muscle pain and tension.
*Unibody L-track design covers 60% more of your back than other massage chairs. The massage rollers extend from the neck all the way down to the buttocks (glutes), a great feature for those suffering from Piriformis syndrome, sacral pain, etc.
*A space-saving design similar to Brookstone’s Zero Wall technology. This means the chair can automatically slide forward when activated, allowing it to recline even with only 2″ of wall clearance.
*Built-in Bluetooth speakers enable users to play their favorite music from a phone or music device and let it sync with the movements of the chair for a more relaxing experience.
*Foot and calf massagers work together to push blood from your lower extremities back to the heart, replacing them with oxygen-rich blood that helps relieve tired, sore muscles. Mechanical foot rollers provide reflexology-style massage to the soles, while the leg rest can be extended/adjusted to suit your height.
*Remote control and a crystal-clear LCD screen allow you to easily adjust the massage settings in real time.
*The interface also comes with multiple language settings: English, Vietnamese, Korean and Chinese.
*Choose from multiple color options: Black, Blue, Cream and Red.
Product Dimensions: Upright Chair Dimensions: 63″L X 31″W X 43″H; Reclined Dimensions: 71″L X 31″W X 38″H | Seat Dimensions: 19″ W X 18″ D | Product Weight: 294 lbs | Recommended Height Range: 5’0″ – 6’9″ | Maximum Load Weight: 285 lbs
⊕Comes with 5-year limited product warranty, more than what other massage chairs in the market are offering. The warranty covers in-home service (1 year), parts (3 years) and structural framework (5 years).
⊕Design of the chair is very impressive down to its smallest details. It has an attractive, well-polished look that is far better than Brookstone Recover 3D. The upholstery is also impressive and leather-like, unlike other massage chairs with vinyl-like coverings.
⊕The L-track rollers effectively reach and massage the buttocks. The hip airbags also provide trigger point massage to the IT bands, the muscles covering the sides of your thighs that are said to be responsible for hip, knee and lower back pain.
⊕3D massage rollers work deeply on the neck, shoulders, and back. Unlike other massage chairs without this technology, Novo XT enables its users to adjust the intensity of the roller massage according to their preference.
⊕The intensity of the airbags (also known in this massage chair as Cloud Touch) is also adjustable, whether you’re using manual or automatic program. Simply press the left or right arrow keys on the circular pad of the remote to achieve your preferred massage intensity.
⊕Human Touch Novo XT doesn’t have a body scan technology, eliminating the need to scan your back just for the chair to figure out your height. Simply choose the height setting and you’re good to go. You can also adjust the rollers any time to ensure they won’t miss your shoulders or hit your head.
⊗Even though the recommended user height is up to 6’9″, people who are 5’10” or taller may already find the chair a little bit cramped than expected. They can still fit, although they have to use the maximum height settings to ensure the massage will reach their neck.
⊗Its airbags create hissing sounds that are a bit noisier than other massage chairs with airbags.
⊗The chair is designed to give massage, which explains why the lumbar area is not overly padded. It’s a bit uncomfortable to use as a simple recliner or lounge chair.
⊗Its cocoon-like design with large side panels prevents users from reaching to the side should they need to grab a book or drink from the table.
⊗Sound quality of the built-in Bluetooth speakers is not up to par.
⊗Although expensive, this chair doesn’t have the memory function or the ability to remember the user’s favorite massage settings. If this is a feature you’ve been eyeing for, the Luraco massage chair is a better choice.
The Bottom Line.
Human Touch Novo XT is a fairly new massage chair that gives big players such as Inada, Panasonic and Luraco a run for their money. It’s a complete package, combining the best features from popular massage chairs in one sleek, beautifully designed masterpiece.
The sound quality of its speakers may be underwhelming, but it’s not the reason why people buy massage chairs in the first place. A high-end chair with a lot of things to offer, Human Touch Novo XT exceeds our expectations and defines what an ideal massage chair should be.