laptop cooling pad Laptop makers and engineers are constantly pushing the boundaries in terms of making machines thinner, and yet more powerful – the latter being a prime consideration with gaming portables, naturally.
And of late, huge strides have been made in terms of powering up gaming laptops, with the ability to pack near-desktop-level equivalent GPUs into a notebook. But at the same time, this brings obvious issues in the form of not just space constraints, but heat-related problems, of course, the two are closely interrelated.
And it’s becoming increasingly challenging to innovate with cooling systems and clever fan setups or super-efficient heat-pipes to cool a chunky CPU and GPU. Because otherwise, these parts can end up throttled back with their performance, and not so desktop-level after all…
But cooling doesn’t just have to be an internal process, of course; it can be external too. And we don’t mean pointing a desk fan at your notebook, but rather using a laptop cooling pad. As the name suggests, this is a pad your laptop sits on which provides cooling with upward-facing fans and sometimes additional heat dissipation via the metal chassis of the pad.
Any additional cooling can help in the battle against throttling, and perhaps moreover, it could potentially prolong the longevity of your laptop. That CPU and GPU will last longer if they aren’t being constantly run at overly hot temperatures. So there’s a possibility that in some cases, spending a little money on some extra cooling might save you a lot of heartache in terms of potentially avoiding the danger of your notebook giving up the ghost early.
A further benefit of a cooling pad is that it can provide a convenient place to situate your laptop on those occasions when you’re actually using it in your lap, preventing a warmer notebook from being unpleasantly hot against your legs.
Note that the mileage you get from any cooling pad may vary in terms of the cooling vents present on the bottom of your notebook, and their respective position compared to the location of the fans in the pad. As common sense would dictate, a decent amount of vents on the underside of your laptop is a good thing here – and in general – and preferably these will be roughly lined up with the pad’s fans.
Although some laptop cooling pads run with one big fan – or multiple smaller ones – that’ll hit pretty much everything, and there are even modular pads where the fans can be repositioned.
Even unfortunate notebooks with no vents on the bottom can benefit somewhat from having the underside of the chassis cooled as a little bit of help in terms of temperature management.
At any rate, while your mileage may vary somewhat given your exact model of laptop, you’ll likely find some benefit from a cooling pad – and perhaps a considerable one, providing, of course, that you choose one of the best models around.
This is where we come in with our top picks in various different categories, from cooling pads designed for large laptops through to highly portable solutions, wallet-friendly pads, and even models with nifty integrated accessories like built-in speakers.
The best laptop cooling pads at a glance: Kootek Cooler Pad Chill Mat
- Cooler Master Notepal XL
- Thermaltake Massive RGB
- Enermax TwisterOdio
- Targus Chill Mat
- Cooler Master MasterNotepal Maker
- Tree New Bee Cooling Pad
- TeckNet N Laptop Cooling Pad
- Cooler Master Notepal X-Slim
- Klim Cool
- The best laptop cooling pads of
- . Kootek Cooler Pad Chill Mat
- Best overall laptop cooling pad
- Fans: x mm, x mm | Size of pad: x x mm
- Impressive level of cooling
- Can select which fans are switched on
- Six different height settings
Kootek makes a highly impressive laptop cooling pad that uses five fans the one in the middle is a bigger mm model, surrounded by mm fans to deliver an impressive amount of cooling – while still remaining quiet to boot.
The Chill Mat scores strongly in the versatility stakes as you can switch some of the fans off it’s possible to have one working, four, or all five, plus it can be raised using a ratchet mechanism, like a deckchair through six different height settings depending on your preference you might want to crank it right up when w