by Jerry Jackson
If your laptop gets extremely hot during average use then the new LapWorks Attache Laptop Stand be exactly what you need. This attractive notebook cooling pad features a sleek design that makes it perfect for packing in your bag as you travel and helps put your screen at the perfect ergonomic position. Even better, the built-in 4-port USB hub gives you access to more USB accessories. Is the Attache Laptop Stand as good as it sounds? Let’s put it to the test.
LapWorks Attache Laptop Stand specs and features:
- Material: High Density ABS Plastic
- Large aluminum plate absorbs/dissipates heat
- Product dimensions: 12-7/8″ wide x 11-3/4″ tall x 1-5/8″ thick
- 4 USB 2.0 ports
- 4 push-button elevation settings
- Lowest elevation for ergonomic direct typing
- Higher elevations require separate keyboard and mouse
- Raises laptop screen to eye level for ergonomic viewing
- 2 silent built-in cooling fans
- Weight: 2 Lbs. 7.5 oz
- ON/OFF power switch
- Rated Voltage: 5V DC
- Power Current: 0.18 A
- Rated Consumption: 0.9 W
- Fan Speed: 2200 +/- 10% RPM
- Fan Airflow: 20 CFM
- Noise Level: < 23 dBA
- Warranty: one year
Design and Build
The Attache Laptop Stand is made of plastic and aluminum and should withstand the normal bumps and bruises associated with travel inside a laptop bag. The Attache uses a push-button elevation arm to adjust the stand to one of four separate screen elevations. Two padded bumpers flip up on the the front edge to hold your laptop in place. The width of the stand is just less than 13 inches, so it’s perfect for laptops with 14″ and smaller screens, but that stand also worked fine with 15-inch and 17-inch notebooks as well.
The main advertised advantage to the Attache stand over other stands is the aluminum face plate – it’s a big heat sink that sucks in the heat that the fans don’t blow out. Whether or not the aluminum face plate serves as genuine heat sink is perhaps debatable, but the aluminum does give the Attache stand a nice look and improved durability. The unit’s sloped design creates an air space that “expedites the convection process” by increasing the air flow beneath your laptop … thus further cooling your notebook.
The Attache uses two cooling fans with quiet, long-lasting hydraulic ball bearings to keep air moving under the laptop. We’ll discuss the fan noise a little later in this review.
The Attache Laptop Stand is generally quiet and doesn’t take away from your notebook’s performance, which is key. That said, I decided to take some temperature readings with an IR thermometer since Lapworks mentions the benefit of the aluminum faceplate as a heat sink and the dual cooling fans to help lower laptop temperatures. My Dell Latitude D630 doesn’t run very hot to begin with, but the cooler did help cool it down a few degrees.
KeyboardBottom Memory CoverPalm rest areaWithout stand92 degrees99 degrees87 degreesWith stand90 degrees96 degrees84 degrees
My Dell was running for about three hours before this test. After I put it on the Attache Laptop Stand for about 15 minutes it already cooled the notebook and started to improve the air flow. However, the overall change in the recorded temperatures was only about two or three degrees Fahrenheit. Considering how slow the fans moved air I suspect this stand would be even more effecive as a cooling pad if the fans had a “high” setting. If your notebook sits on the Attache Laptop Stand all day while you work, you should notice a slightly cooler notebook.
Fortunately, there is a four-port USB hub built into the Attache … something you’ll be glad to have since the Attache uses one of your laptops existing USB ports for power. You will lose a USB port from your notebook when you plug it in, but you get four more ports in return. As soon as you plug the Attache into your USB port your Windows or Mac OS laptop will instantly recognize the USB hub and you can begin working. The cooling fans likewise begin spinning as soon as the stand is plugged into your laptop’s USB port … assuming the Attache’s power switch is turned on. The Attache is “plug and play” simplicity at its best.
Noise and Power Consumption
During most of the testing period the cooling fans inside the Attahe were extremely quiet. Considering there are two desktop-style fans inside pushing air to help cool your laptop, it’s impressive that it didn’t make more noise. However, after a few hours of constantly running I did hear some occassional light clicking sounds coming from the cooling fans. The noise sounded like plastic clicking over plastic so I suspect the noise might have been from unbalanced cooling fan blades rubbing against the fan housing inside the stand. The noise wan’t loud, but after a couple of hours the noise was annoying.
In terms of power consumption the Attache was a bit of a mixed bag. Although the technical specs suggest a reasonably lower overall power consumption we did find several ultraportable notebooks didn’t supply sufficient power from a single USB port to power both the Attache’s built-in USB hub and the cooling fans. Every notebook we tested was able to power the USB hub, but some notebooks (such as the Asus Eee PC and Fujitsu LifeBook P1620) couldn’t power the cooling fans. All standard 12″ and larger laptops we tested were able to run both the USB hub and the cooling fans, so this won’t be an issue for most consumers.
Overall, the LapWorks Attache Laptop Stand did its job. The Attache cooled my notebook by several degrees in just a few minutes, which should help my notebook’s long-term lifespan and performance. In addition, the built-in USB hub and adjustable elevations make this stand an excellent choice for consumers who use their laptops as a desktop computer replacement.
For $69.95 you get an attractive stand with a solid USB hub and cooling fans. On the negative side, the cooling fans didn’t seem to cool the notebook as much as we would have hoped. In addition, we would have liked to see a little less power consumption so that ultraportable notebooks can power both the USB hub and the cooling fans. In short, we recommend the LapWorks Attache Laptop Stand for standard laptop users who need a good stand for desktop replacement needs.
- Nice design
- Built-in USB hub
- Runs from USB power (see below)
- Noise levels varied during testing
- Minimal cooling benefit
- Can’t run from USB on all notebooks
Pricing and Availability
The LapWorks Attache Laptop Stand is priced at $69.95 and is available at the Lapworks websitealong with more product information and updates.
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