Product Review: Sanyo SA 5000 Massage Chair Recliner

by James Knolan

This is a review of the mid range massage chair the SA 5000 by Sanyo. This review covers 5 different categories including Warranty & Customer Service, Comfort/Ergonomics, Ease of Use, Features and Massage Therapy. We give equal weight to each category which can earn up to 20 points. The scores of the individual categories are summed to give an overall rating of a possible 100 points. We have found this system to cover the salient points of the massage chair. Let us take a look at the SA 5000.

Warranty & Customer Service: We first cover the warranty and customer service. These are your long term protections from potential problems with your purchase. This product is has the following warranty coverage: 3 years on the roller mechanism, 1 year parts, 1 year labor and 1 year in home technician service. We like the 3 years on the roller mechanism. The best manufacturers cover parts for a minimum of 3 years, so Sanyo is a bit light here. They do offer 1 year in home technician service which is a plus. Sanyo has a national call center for customer service which is fairly competent. We give an overall rating of 15 in this category.

Comfort & Ergonomics: This section looks at the ergonomics of the design for comfort and relaxation. This chair comes with padded armrests which are soft and comfortable. The head support pillow is adjustable and contoured to support the head. The back pad is plush and well padded. The leg ottoman is in a fixed position and cannot be adjusted. This can be a drawback to taller users. The layout of the remote control is good and within easy arms reach. There is a wired sub remote that has minimal adjustments included. The SA5000 earns a 15 in this category.

Ease of Use: With the number of features increasing every year in massage chairs, keeping the remote controls simple and easy to use is paramount. We like the simple, yet functional design of the SA 5000 remote control. You have 4 one-touch buttons for automatic massages. There is a Program Memory function which will record the last few minutes of the massage and store it for later use. There is a wired sub remote for the pulse monitoring which must be held during the massage. The manual controls are neatly located in a side panel of the remote control. We give this massage recliner an 18 for ease of use.

Key Features: The prominent features in the Sanyo SA 5000 are the Stiffness Detection Sensor and the GK Rollers. The stiffness detection sensor is based on lie detection technology. This sensor detects stress points throughout your whole back. The stiffness detection gauges fatigue by monitoring changes in your perspiration and pulse rate. This information is then fed into the computer and the software will adjust the massage programs to target areas of stiffness or tight muscles. The GK Rollers are specially designed rollers that have the capability to perform a grip or grasping massage. The GK roller technology ?reaches out? and grabs you. This is especially effective for the neck and shoulder area. These rollers squeeze your shoulders and neck area to emulate the grasping and kneading of a professional masseuse. Our rating in this category is 18.

Massage Therapy: The SA 5000 comes with automatic programs, 4 programs stored in the Memory Program, 4 manual massage techniques and 4 massage courses for the back. The automatic programs are Stiffness, Relax, Recovery and Fine. There are 5 adjustments for both the massage speeds and roller width adjustments. There is the Grip massage which effectively targets the neck and shoulders. For the lower body, this recliner comes with 24 airbags to provide relief for the feet, calves and thighs. There are specially designed airbags that provides a multi-point shiatsu massage. This provides a penetrating and soothing massage. We give the SA-5000 an 18 in this category.

Overall, we rate the Sanyo SA-5000 an 84/100. The SA 5000 comes with many of the same technologies as Sanyo’s high end version the DR7700. The stroke length of the back rollers is 28 inches compared to 31 inches for the DR 7700, but most of the same technology is in the SA 5000. The factory warranty is just ok and you may want to explore an extended warranty to equal other manufacturer’s coverage. The GK rollers are a nice feature for neck and shoulder coverage. The leg rest would be more ergonomic for the American market if there was an extension built in. If you are looking for a massage chair recliner in this category, the SA 5000 is one you should check out.

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