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Reviewed By: Bryan Pizzuti [10.28.02]
Edited By: Carl Nelson
Manufactured By: Bytecc
MSRP: $30.00


The Test

I tested this device my Dell Inspiron 4100. It's equipped with a Pentium3-M at 1 GHz, with 256 MB of RAM and a 20 GB 5400 RPM HDD, and a Dell DVD drive loaded in the CD bay. The system is loaded with Windows XP Home version. A Fluke Multimeter with thermal probe was used for all thermal measurements, while the room was at a steady temperature of 72 degrees, in the middle of the night (so no sunlight was affecting temperature readings in any way). And by the way, I'm American, so all degree measurements are in Fahrenheit. I never learned to think in Celsius, so oh well. :)

We ran Prime95 and 3DMark2001SE (Game1, continuous loop) to make sure we generated plenty of heat on both the CPU and the video chips, as well as getting some heat from the hard drive. Once the CPU utilization was pegged around 100% we let the system run for an hour to let the temperature stabilize, and then recorded the temperature.

Readings were taken with the PCs running without the cooler at all, with the cooler but without the fans running, and with the fans running, to see what sort of difference (if any) this Aluminum Notebook Cooler can make. Pictured below is the location selected to take the readings.

The probe remained taped to this location for the length of the tests. Illustrated in the diagram is the approximate location of the HDD, CPU, and GPU inside the case, as well as the exhaust fan, which we decided to stay clear of when measuring, even though it's close to the CPU and GPU; reason being that the variable fan already in place could throw the readings off. And you'll notice the serial # and Windows XP key have been blocked out by patterns, in case you were wondering what those weird green patches were. The results came out like so:

Well, the stand by itself barely makes a difference...the added height underneath serves to increase airflow a bit, which would account for the 2.3 degree drop in monitored temperature. But when turning the fans on, this device makes a huge difference, dropping monitored temperature all the way down to 84 degrees. Not only that but the fans really aren't as loud as they could a matter of fact, the small fan in the Inspiron itself drowns them out when it comes on (it's small, but runs at a VERY high RPM).

Ergonomically, this is a very comfortable device, placing the notebook keyboard at a much more workable angle. It can also be used on the lap, keeping that nice hot computer away from certain *ahem* essential areas of the human anatomy. When turning the fans on, it does a great job of cooling off the computer, and could theoretically extend the operating life of the machine. But I question the use of aluminum here for anything more than a marketing ploy; it's possible plastic would do just as good a job, though it might not be as durable. Also, the marketing lure of a buzzword like "aluminum" can certainly pay off in sales.

All in all, this is a decent product, but not spectacular. If you want a stand for your notebook PC, you could certainly do much worse than this product. And the aluminum DOES look and feel nice and solid...much more so than plastic would.

  • A step above most notebook stands
  • Aluminum looks good
  • Fans do a great job

  • It might be cheaper if it was made of all plastic
  • The cooler doesn't cool unless the fans are running