Laptop coolers are an essential for nearly all types of laptop users. They can offer relief from high core temperatures when performing advanced functions like gaming or video rendering, or prevent further slowdown in older machines with damaged internal cooling systems.
And since side and bottom-placed fan vents plague most notebooks, a stand to increase airflow and heat dissipation is a necessity for anyone who commonly uses their laptops on a bed or another cushioned surface. Whatever reason you are in need of a cooling pad, you should be sure you are getting the best product for your dollar, which is why we compiled the top 5 cooling pads currently available.
1. Thermaltake Massive TM
The Thermaltake Massive TM takes home the cake in terms of extra features, which is great for those who want maximum control over their cooling pads. It has an elegant brushed aluminum finish with a hexagonal grill large enough support and cool notebooks up to 17 inches. The fan itself is made of durable plastic and has feet that can be angled for three different levels of comfort.
Its dual 120 mm fans can be manually or automatically adjusted for the most effective cooling. The most useful feature of this laptop cooler is its four adjustable temperature sensors, which can read out the temperatures of various points on your laptop, making smart cooling even easier.
In addition to the button that switches from Auto to Manual, you also have a power button, a Turbo button to max out cooling power, a lock button that keeps controls from being accidentally bumped, and of course, a button to change the fan speed. There is also an easy and smart multi-function display panel that shows information from the temperature sensors.
Backed up with two onboard USB 2.0 ports, the Massive TM Cooler is loaded with more features than you could ask from a cooling pad. But in the end, does that distract from its core functionality, or enhance it? Well, that depends on the user.
2. Cooler Master NotePal X-Slim
The Cooler Master NotePal X-Slim is the ideal laptop cooler for those seeking a low profile cooling pad for use with a laptop 17 inches or smaller. It has a truly slim 46 mm profile, even when you pull out the cooling pad’s two-stage rubber feet to elevate the laptop and improve its air intake.
While elevating the laptop alone can improve your core temperatures and performance, the NotePal X-Slim’s large 160 mm fan can offer powerful and nearly silent cooling while spinning at up to 1500 RPM. The metal mesh design further enhances airflow around the fan, meaning that it can move as much air as a device with more individual fans.
With one pass-through USB port, the X-Slim does not waste an accessory port on your laptop, but all the same does not offer a USB hub either. This is a bit of a disappointment, but considering this cooler’s price against the others on this list, it’s clear that this cooling pad is a more stripped down unit than others on this list.
The simplicity of the NotePal X-Slim can be a huge bonus for users who aren’t looking to fiddle with settings to optimize cooling, since it so clearly focuses on doing one thing well. Comfort is the most important part of selecting a cooling fan, so it’s best to go for the option that provides the absolute best comfort.
3. Havit Laptop Cooler
The Havit Laptop Cooler is a particularly stylish tilting fan pad for notebooks up to 17 inches, and one that has a good mix of practical features as well. To start, this laptop cooler’s hinge allows it to form a slight angle against its plastic base, increasing airflow beneath the metal grill for added cooling.
This model sports two large 130 mm fans, which though less powerful than the single fans featured in other cooling pads (each spins at 800 RPM), distribute cool air more evenly across your laptop. Note that for $10 more, you can instead get Havit’s three fan version, which provides additional cooling power.
This cooling pad also features two convenient USB 2.0 ports, allowing you to charge additional accessories or even connect a mouse or keyboard. Both pads are also surprisingly quiet.
The blue LEDs look nice, but can be distracting to some. Unfortunately the only way to dim the lights is the slider which also reduces the power of the fans, meaning you can can’t get full fan performance without also getting full power LEDs.
That said, the speed controls themselves are a nice feature, since that is the extent of your controls and how you turn the fan fully off. As long as the lights aren’t a major concern, this cooler is a top choice.
4. Superbpag USB Powered Cooling Pad
While the benefits of having more small fans over one large one aren’t entirely clear-cut, the Superbpag USB Powered Cooling Pad goes all out on fan count with its whopping six individual fans. Without discrediting simpler one fan models, the additional fans should be a benefit for those looking to maximize heat dissipation and airflow.
The fans are fairly noiseless, though with an individual motor powering each, can be expected to be just a bit louder than other models. In exchange for this, you have several different fan configurations that allow you to allocate power to specific trouble areas for your device such as its battery or CPU.
Most of this laptop’s features such as the temperature display, manual control buttons, and onboard USB 2.0 ports are appreciated. Like Havit’s laptop cooler, the Superbpag cooler’s adjustable gradient allows you to choose a nice range of angles at which you can rest your keyboard.
One feature that is a little more polarizing are the prominent blue fan LEDs. Many enjoy the high-tech vibe given off by the LEDs, but if the light seems like an inconvenience to you, you might opt for the five fan version without LEDs. For most, the LEDs are no issue though, meaning the positives for this sturdy little fan strongly outweigh the negatives.
5. Merkury Innovations NotePal ErgoStand
The Merkury Innovations NotePal ErgoStand, in addition to being one of the least expensive coolers listed, is an appealing fan stand that maxes ergonomics and comfort with the widest adjustable angles we’ve seen yet.
The first two settings, both of which tilt the laptop up less than 30 ° each, allow for more comfortable typing on your lap, while the remaining higher angle settings are best for propping the laptop keyboard up almost vertically.
This might seem of little use since it makes lap use incredibly inconvenient. But using the sturdy rubber feet at the bottom in combination with a high angle can be a smart way to prop your laptop screen to eye level on your desk if you use an external keyboard and mouse.
Doing so can reduce strain on your neck and rounding in your shoulders, both of which are common side effects of prolonged laptop use.
The cooling itself is powerful, so much that the fan can get fairly loud on its max setting. Usually running it that high is not necessary, but if you have a machine that needs serious cooling this may end up being a fairly noisy device.
Not including the MiniUSB charging port, the NotePal ErgoStand provides four additional USB 2.0 ports plus cable management clips, which gives it great potential to serve as a hub for the aforementioned USB accessories.
On the other side of the device, you have a power button for the unit, a slider knob to control fan power, and a DC adapter to reduce battery drain on your laptop. This cooling pad’s form factor may not make it the best for carrying around, but can make it a perfect inclusion for a stationary laptop setup.