What type of cooling pad works best?
July 6, 2010 3:23 AM   Subscribe

Which kind of laptop cooling pad works better, the USB-powered fan ones, or the ones filled with a cooling chemical?

I have an Acer Aspire 6530 and am seeking a new cooling pad for it. (My current Targus cooling pad has a problem with the cord, so it only works intermittently) While looking through Amazon, I saw there were some 'Heatsink' cooling pads which didn't use fans, but instead claimed to cool laptops through some kind of gel inside of it. Has anyone used this type of laptop cooling pad, and was it more effective than a USB fan-powered one?
posted by Charmian to Technology (8 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
BE carefull with the cooling pads. some have the fan facing down so it draws air away from the bottom of the laptop BUT some laptops suck air in from the bottom of the laptop for the internal fans. so make sure your laptop cooling pad matches with the airflow of your laptop.
posted by majortom1981 at 3:50 AM on July 6, 2010 [1 favorite]

I don't think there's any evidence those things actually help, and the USB models take a chunk out of your battery life. Keeping your laptop off your lap is really all they're good for, and you can do that with a piece of stiff plastic or a binder or any old thing.
posted by mhoye at 5:42 AM on July 6, 2010

I would suspect that the gel pads have a finite temp differential they will be able to absorb before beginning very hot themselves.

My wife has a netbook that runs uncomfortably hot and the fan cooling pad she has keeps it nice and cool. The pad blows air up toward the computer, which I think is usually better. But it has a stupid design in that if you place it on a flat surface, there the gap between the base and the surface is not big enough to permit a large enough flow of air to properly cool things. So we usually prop it up.
posted by reddot at 5:59 AM on July 6, 2010

point of reference ... my laptop was overheating so I added a fan cooling pad with USB power ... you wouldn't believe how hot the USB cable connector became, and the USB connector (which was on the motherboard) ... luckily my cooling pad has the option for external power.

I would be cautions powering fans through USB alone.
posted by jannw at 6:02 AM on July 6, 2010

I have a USB cooling fan and pretty much all it does is keep my laptop off my lap, yes. It doesn't seem to make a difference whether I plug it in or not.
posted by Xany at 6:30 AM on July 6, 2010

The best laptop cooling pad I have used is a silicone cutting board that I put some of those stick-on rubber/silicone bumpers on top of. It keeps the laptop from sliding off the board and lifts the laptop up about a half inch, allowing for airflow underneath. This is for one of those scalding circa-2007 macbook pros, btw.
posted by 8dot3 at 7:07 AM on July 6, 2010 [1 favorite]

Neither work for me, actually. I use Rain Design's iLap instead. It's completely passive but keeps my laptop several degrees cooler than a similarly sized plastic stand with a fan.
posted by nathan_teske at 8:02 AM on July 6, 2010

I was going to recommend the iLap as well. Passive, but works a treat on hot days with a hot aluminium Mac. Also, it is light as a feather. An aluminium feather, to be sure, but still really light.
posted by qwip at 9:15 AM on July 6, 2010

« Older iCal/Google Calendar privacy   |   How do You Give People Time to Work on Their... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.