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Laptop Cooling Stand Review - "The Psychologist as Detective" Tim 
Posted by: Tim at 10:45 PM EST on 2/28/2005
File Under: Misc Tech -> Computers

My laptop has been acting up a bit lately, but I kinda consider it my fault. You see, I have the habit of trying to watch XviDs that are an hour or two long, all while running Outlook, iTunes, AIM, and BitTorrent in the background. That, and my dorm room doesn't have very good air circulation. What this all adds up to is frequent overheating. Most of the time, the fan just kicks in full force and my movies start skipping or stalling. But, other times, the computer overheats completely and shuts down.

The problem is most certainly one of air circulation, as everything tends to run very well if I keep the computer on my lap with the vent fully unobstructed. The problems occur when I leave it sitting on my desk (read: most of the time). Seriously, I want to know what genius at Dell figured it would be a good idea to put the system's one and only fan on the bottom of the unit. Regardless, since I knew what the problem was, I figured it would be easy to solve. I looked into such solutions as the NC-500 Cooling Pad and the LapCool2 Notebook Cooler, but decided they didn't really fit my needs.

Finally, I settled on The Psychologist As Detective: An Introduction to Conducting Research in Psychology, Second Edition, by Randolph A. Smith and Stephen Davis. Now, Prentice Hall Publishing isn't usually known for computer accessories, but I think they've created a fine entry into the low-end laptop cooling device market. At prices as low as $1.95, this unit is practically a steal. Sure, it doesn't perform perfectly, but the price is unbeatable! Ever since installing it, the number of overheating instances I have experienced have dropped dramatically, (only one that I can think of in the past couple of weeks) and my overall computing experience has improved greatly. The fan now kicks into its highest speed much less frequently, meaning noise levels have reduced significantly.

Overall: I highly recommend this item to anyone that needs a cheap, effective, laptop cooling pad. Just be sure to pick up the second edition. The latest edition is significantly more expensive, and provides no extra benefits.

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