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Pros: Comfortable on your lap. The simplicity of the design makes it easy to use. It's just a wedge with fans and padding. It also has two fans, which is not usually the case.
Cons: It's prone to breaking on the edges of the upper surface. I have had two of these. They have both broken in the same place. The reason for this that I use my laptop in my chair. This means that I need to pick it up and move it a lot. The only way to safely do that is to hold the Chill Mat by edges of the upper surface and grip the laptop with your thumbs. There's not a lot of pressure involved, but over time the minute flexing that occurs causes the plastic to crack.
Overall Review: So here's the thing, it's a cheap plastic laptop mat. It keeps my hot laptop off my legs, which is the bare minimum it needs to do, and about all its capable of.
The fans are very quiet, because they don't do anything. I've moved more air with a fart than these fans-- two of them!-- can push. I have noticed precisely zero difference in temperature with the fans on vs off, so I just leave it unplugged-- not worth dealing with the extra USB plug jutting out the side of my computer. Also, the fans only hit the top third of the cooler. If your computer builds up heat anywhere else, it will stay hot.
The construction overall is... not good. The plastic is cheap and very flimsy, I feel like I'm going to snap it every time I pick it up. The edges of the plastic that meet the fabric are very sharp. They also happen to be the only edges which come into contact with your skin. All the edges on the *inside* of the mat are nicely rounded off, very pleasant, but when you put it on your lap, it digs into your skin.
The fabric is also terrible. It feels like the cheap microfiber that makes my skin crawl. I was hoping for a nice, soft surface that's comfortable to use on a bare lap. No such luck.
Additionally, the rubber feet on the top of the mat that are supposed to hold your laptop in place... don't. It might just be my particular computer, but it's all but impossible to use this thing in any position other than sitting flat on a stable surface.
I really wish I'd paid more for something nicer. As it stands, I guess I'm making a new fabric cover, shaving down the edges, replacing the fans, and installing a fan control circuit.
Pros: Angled design allows more air to flow under the laptop.
The dual fans bring in air from the outside and have kept my laptop ~5 degrees cooler than before.
The fans are QUIET, I don't even notice them unless I'm trying to hear them. My laptop runs louder than the fans do.
It's padded so you can put it on your lap.
Cons: I took away an egg because the fans are placed in the middle of the cooling pad. If your graphics card and processor aren't in the middle of your laptop (mine are on the left) then you may need to reposition your laptop so the fans keep it cool.
During normal use my laptop runs at 45-50 C. When I play games it reaches 70 C. The only time I need to reposition the laptop is during gaming so if you're not a gamer, you won't have a problem.
The rubber stoppers that come with the chill mat are utterly useless. I don't use them and my laptop doesn't slide off.
Overall Review: HP Pavilion dv6700t
Core 2 Duo 2.4 GHz
2 gigs RAM
GeForce 8400 M GS
Pros: Lightweight and reasonably portable, fairly comfortable design.
Cons: The USB cable is somewhat unwieldy and _very_ flimsy. Within a few months, the insulation had started to crak where it enters the back of the cooler, and by the end of the first year the cable had completely broken off.
That said, I still use it in many situations even though the fans no longer have power -- the airspace makes all the difference when it comes to my laptop overheating if I'm working on a soft surface.
Pros: This is one of the very few I've found for the wife (and myself occasionally) that meets all the criteria of a *LAP*top cooler!! 1. comfortable on the LAP! 2. air intake from the sides, not from the bottom where it sits on your LAP! 3. sturdy design, quiet yet effective fans. 4. Affordable.
Cons: Rubber grippers are inserted into holes so they can come off, but it's no problem -- just don't lose them! Oh and it's big... not really a con if you've got the 17" or 15" laptops, but it'd be sweet if they made a smaller version.
Overall Review: WHY why why can't they make more like this! Seriously. Take a hint manufacturers, this is how it's done. Targus, make a smaller version of this for 13-14 inchers, and it'll be perfect.
Pros: Very quiet and I was pleasently surprised that it has a very "quality" look.
Cons: I have concerns in the power cable entry located on the back is subject to abuse. It would help if entry to the chassis were recessed or even better went in through the open side.
Pros: Second one that I purchased...they don't get any better than this for the price!
Cons: Noe for either one.
Overall Review: If you're thinking of purchasing a laptop cooling mat...go for it!!
Pros: This mat was the only mat at the time that I could find that had a built in fan along with the shape and design to comfortably be on your lap.
Cons: The USB cord which needs to be connected for fan operation comes out the back of the mat and often gets in the way.
Overall Review: If I was to redesign this mat I would have the USB cord inside the mat instead of coming out the back. I would also have some simple feature to clip the USB connector on to for storage.