What do u think of the Belkin cooling pad?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Dman91, Aug 9, 2011.

  1. Dman91 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2011
    #1
    Hello Everyone

    I have bought a macbook pro 2011 15inch a while ago, I haven't got it yet but hopefully I will get it soon. I have heard about macbook pro heating topics alot and was wondering if anyone has ever used those cooling pads ? if yes how was your experience? is there any of those more compatible to macbook pro or doesn't it matter??

    thanks for your input
     
  2. squeakr macrumors 68000

    squeakr

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    Apr 22, 2010
    #3
    I would assume that it would keep the bottom cool for sitting on your lap, but would do little for actual cooling of the machine. These work on the premise of bringing cool air circulating around the computer and through the cooling vents. Since the MBP has no cooling vents on the bottom, then it will just be circulating the air around the MBP and not real facilitating actual cooling. There was a thread here where someone put their MBP on ice within a bag and the cooling effect for the CPU was not improved.
     
  3. Synergie macrumors 6502a

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    Halifax, Canada
    #4
    I have the Belkin Cooling pad. And yes it does cool the actual interior of the MBP (including the CPU) I used iStat Pro to see the temps prior to and after using the pad on my lap. It dropped the CPU temp reading by 10 degrees about 10 mins after plugging in the USB powered fan in the cooling pad. (and yes I was doing the same tasks on the computer before and after using the pad)

    I can't comment on the ice idea (other than I would never try it) but for some reason the cooling pad does work!

    This cooling pad has another added benefit (besides also cooling your legs from being too hot) in that the rear can be elevated slightly making typing easier - it's almost like a lap desk.
     
  4. Dman91 thread starter macrumors member

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    Jun 27, 2011
    #5
    I checked their website and amazon , they have different models, which one are you using?

    Isn't it a little uncomfortable for your legs , coz on the base it has a leg or projection?
     
  5. Synergie macrumors 6502a

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    #6
    I am using this one:
    [​IMG]

    I don't use the leg part when it's on my lap. That's more for on a desk or table.
     
  6. rockyroad55 macrumors 601

    rockyroad55

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    Phila, PA
    #7
    Why don't you just download smcFanControl to increase the RPM of the fans?
     
  7. Prodo123 macrumors 68020

    Prodo123

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    Nov 18, 2010
    #8
    If you think your laptop is too hot...
    get a desktop or deal with it.

    It's normal for laptops to hit low 90's, but as long as it doesn't go over 95 degrees Celsius (which it never does) your laptop will be fine. What people whine about in the forums is that the laptop is too uncomfortable to use. Believe me, it's not that hot unless Apple completely messed up their thermal paste. Only the part near the screen gets hot; the rest just stays warm.
     
  8. Synergie macrumors 6502a

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    Halifax, Canada
    #9
    Why are you so bothered by a device that can make your lap a little more comfortable while using a laptop in a hot environment? It's not like we are forcing you to buy one! I don't use my cooling pad all the time... just when I have the laptop on my lap for extended periods of time, in a warm/hot environment (like Summer) and my lap gets sticky and sweaty. It's not hurting anything to use the cooling pad, and it actually works! So why do you feel the need to attack people who post about a helpful product?? Is it bothering you THAT much?
     
  9. wegster macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2006
    #10
    There's nothing 'wrong' with the cooling pads, but be aware they are generally of less use on Macbooks from a cooling standpoint - there are no intake vents on the bottom like there are on most other laptops. You will get some amount of residual minor cooling effect by cooling the case, but it's likely to be no more than a couple of *C maximum. People reporting large cooling effect, I'd love to know their exact testing method. If it were something like:
    1. start at ambient temperature X, after system was powered down overnight (or some reasonable period of time).
    2. launch CPUTest with indefinite loops, and proper number of threads to max out every core
    3. Run for 30 minutes on stopwatch
    4. Using a sane and specific temp measuring tool, report temps of CPU, GPU, etc.
    5. Stop CPUTest
    6. Power down and wait for complete cooldown, before moving on to repeat 1-5 with a cooling pad.

    Unfortunately, most people who just bought something *want* to see a 'result,' and also tend to not use reproducible/sane tests to measure any 'differences.'

    A stand of any kind *will* have benefits:
    1. keeps your legs or other parts from burning.
    2. ensures your macbook doesn't have it's intake or exhaust blocked, and maintains some air circulation across the bottom of the case. What if anything this one is worth vs sitting on a flat desk with unobstructed intake and exhaust isn't likely to be much. There are obvious benefits vs throwing it on top of a blanket, though. :)
    3. Possibly a more convenient orientation for screen/keyboard.

    Add a fan into the mixture that is very unlikely to be improving air movements/circulation throughout a macbook/air/pro, and maybe you'll see 1-2*C improvement tops.

    Having said that, I do have a stand, sans fan. It keeps the screen positioned properly next to my LCD, ensures I don't block off the intake on my usually messy desk, and that there is at least some air circulation for the aforementioned minor cooling effect. Until someone provides reproducible sane testing vs - oh, when I run some game (in manual, not benchmark or reproducible fashion, on a game that can widely vary load from frame to frame, or scene to scene), or do a 'benchmark' for 30-60 seconds with no mention of whatever else is or is not running on the system, etc..I just wouldn't expect more than another degree or so from adding a fan.

    I'd love to be wrong here, but without an actual air inlet on the bottom, or actual direct thermal interfacing to the AL chassis, the best that I believe we can really do is cool down the casing, which will remove some small amount of heat soak from the internals, not block the intake flow from the rear, and make ourselves comfortable.
     
  10. Prodo123 macrumors 68020

    Prodo123

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    Nov 18, 2010
    #11
    Cooling pads are only mildly annoying. What IS annoying is a bunch of people whining about something they should have thought about when they bought a laptop.

    If you put any laptop on your lap it's going to be hot. It's common sense. If a person buys a laptop then they accept that fact. Laptops are also meant to be portable. If a person's going to ruin the portability of a 13/15" laptop with a cooling pad, then why buy a laptop at all?

    It's like stuffing 2 laptops in your backpack. Also adds 1-3 inches to the overall thickness of the MacBook Pro, which is one of its major selling points.

    Sorry if it's offensive, but cooling pads just make the portability factor of laptops completely pointless. Your legs will be hot either way because the pad has padding on the other side as well.


    Completely true. The actual things that will help cool laptops, especially when they're in a metal enclosure, are heatsinks. Which means the best thing you can do is get a biiiiiiiig piece of copper or other metal and put it so that it's in direct contact with the metal laptop, and cool that piece of metal with a bunch of fans. It's like an external CPU heatsink.

    That said, metal stands do the same thing. The metal absorbs heat and transfers it down the entire stand, so that the stand is as evenly heated as possible. Then the natural airflow around the stand cools it, ergo cooling the laptop.
     
  11. Synergie macrumors 6502a

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    #12
    I actually noticed roughly a 10 C drop on the CPU (using iStat Pro) and about the same in Heatsink B - I was doing some graphics processing that was taking quite a bit of processor usage, and I noticed it getting rather hot on my legs, so I checked the temp with iStat Pro. CPU was 76, and Heatsink B was 64. (I know - call me a wimp if you want for whinging about 76 C on my bare lap - I was wearing shorts :p ) I continued doing the same processing on another image... and within 10 mins of plugging in the fan on the cooling pad and putting the MBP on the cooling pad, it had dropped to 67 C on the CPU, and 56 on Heatsink B. So it does make a difference.

    While there is no holes on the bottom for the heat to escape, keep in mind that metal including aluminum conduct heat very well. Without anywhere for that heat to escape (convection off the case) from having it directly against another warm surface (your legs) will keep the internal heat higher. Having air movement around the base, and the way the pad is designed (it's not flat... it bevels in at the centre so there is nothing touching the bottom of the MBP in the centre) allows the aluminum case to cool and draw more heat away from the internals. From Belkin's website "It uses natural convection to enhance fan cooling"

    How much of that is true I do not know - that's how Belkin explains it ... all I know is that I have seen the results in iStat Pro. And while every time might not see a 10 C difference, there IS always a difference!

    In any case... nobody is forcing anyone to buy one! So I don't understand why people get so defensive about it and try to shoot it down! I don't shoot every person's suggestions for cases etc down! To each their own right??
     
  12. Prodo123 macrumors 68020

    Prodo123

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    Nov 18, 2010
    #13
    Yes, nobody is shooting anyone down. We are criticizing a product, not accusing people of making mistakes.

    Here's how a cooling pad theoretically works: Fans run underside the laptop to cool the laptop.
    Here's what it actually does. It creates little space for the conductive aluminum to disperse heat into the air, therefore effectively insulating the laptop from the bottom. But there are fans to counteract this insulation, so the overall effect is that there is simply little to no difference.

    To effectively cool the laptop, the pad HAS to be a good thermal conductor (aluminum, copper, etc.), touch the laptop on the metal (e.g. the center of the bottom plate), and have fans cooling the pad itself, creating a heatsink effect that cools the laptop.

    What you're seeing is a mild drop in temperature. If it's less than 10 degrees then it's a mild drop. It won't make a difference! The only "cooling" you will notice is the protection you get from the heat of the laptop, which isn't much in the first place.
     
  13. Prodo123 macrumors 68020

    Prodo123

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    Nov 18, 2010
    #14
    So it drains your battery, while making your laptop only mildly cooler.
    Hmm...

    That ad bothers me, it has a MacBook Pro running Windows getting DLL errors
     
  14. Synergie macrumors 6502a

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    Halifax, Canada
    #15
    Prodo... I don't bring the cooling pad with me when I take the MBP out... I only use it at home, when it's like 36-40 C and my legs are sticky and sweaty LOL Guys might like having sticky and sweaty legs, but us girls don't!! I find it makes my legs more comfortable when it's extra warm... It doesn't mean I don't deserve to own a laptop or that I am stupid!! Besides when I am out, I usually have the laptop on a table (like at Starbucks for example...and no thats not the only place i take it!!) :) and not on my lap. I wouldn't bring the cooling pad with me yes because it adds extra bulk to carry around. At home, I am more prone to having it on my lap while sitting on the sofa... and that's what I got it for!
     
  15. Prodo123 macrumors 68020

    Prodo123

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    Nov 18, 2010
    #16
    Never said you don't deserve a laptop. I said you should have looked into the heat issue when you were buying the laptop.
     
  16. harmonica01, Aug 10, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2011

    harmonica01 macrumors 6502

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    Jul 30, 2007
    #18
    best fan for laptops I've used was antec's exhaust fan, i didn't get the big beefy one but my 2008 13" stays 10º down under load with the external exhaust fan on high. Im sure many of you know of the nonsense heat with the 2008 series unibodies and the problem with the closed lid shell associate with osx lion now. So 10 degrees may not seem like a big deal, but with how much I demand out of this poor old thing before I update next month I am more than surprised, I can't imagine what the bigger ones do
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0000BVYTV/ref=as_li_qf_sp_asin_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=pithrevi-20&linkCode=as2&camp=217145&creative=399373&creativeASIN=B0000BVYTV
     
  17. harmonica01 macrumors 6502

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    #19
  18. VMMan macrumors 6502a

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    Mar 29, 2009
    #20
    For the desk I have a CoolerMaster aluminum base with 3 fans you can position towards the rear of the laptop. I think it's the U3 model'a $20-30.

    For sitting in bed or on the couch I use the small logitch plastic one that has a small quiet fan located towards the rear of the computer. They seem to drop the temps enough so that the MBP fans don't turn on any more.

    I had the more expensive Zalman aluminum one $60 but the fans were really loud.

    The aluminum or metal ones would be my recommendation to try and act as a heatsink to the MBP body, which acts as a heatsink itself.
     

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