Anyone who's used a laptop for more than 10 minutes at a stretch will agree that it's a gross misnomer. You can't use one on your lap to play a game of solitaire without risking a Kapura Fry. However, it's not just your family jewels at stake. Place the laptop on your bed, and the pliant surface suffocates the vents, which in turn puts your expensive hardware under potentially catastrophic thermal stress. Unless you intend to use your laptop as an expensive desktop replacement, it's wise to invest in a decent laptop cooler. That's why we called in Logitech's latest Cooling Pad N200 for review.
A single fan design may not be powerful, but it's silent.
Design And Build Quality Unlike its confounding cousins - the Cooling Pad N120 (Rs 1195) and Cooling Pad N100 (Rs 1545) - which exhibit identical features and specifications yet different prices, the N200 sports significant revisions; the most important being the inclusion of a padded base sporting a breathable mesh. This gives the cooler an edge over its plasticky counterparts. The N200 is a pleasure to use, thanks to its light weight and soft padding that prevents sweat even in humid climates.
The cooler can house laptops up to a 16" screen size. A protrusion along the bottom edge, along with a pair of rubber bushes at the top, arrests your laptop from sliding down. That means you can use it at an angle without a sweat. The quality of plastics is disappointing, though. Logitech should have employed better materials than the hard, shiny, and evidently cheap plastics used with the N200. The slats on the bottom vent are thin, flimsy, and liable to break if inadvertently sandwiched between the weight of the laptop and a protrusion of some kind.
Cable management is a great addition.
The cooler features nifty cable management through multiple channels housing the USB cable, flush with the chassis during both storage and operation. The cable emerges from the centre and can be routed through the channels on either side. This is a godsend if the USB ports are occupied on one side.
The two-speed fan controller.
The aerodynamics are well thought out in the N200. A hollowed-out bottom ensures adequate airflow even if you place the cooling pad on the bed. Air is sucked in from the bottom and dissipated through vents that force cool air all round the base. However, a single fan design focuses only on the centre of the laptop, as opposed to twin fan coolers that employ a dedicated fan to cool the hot exhaust vent, which usually lies at the top-left hand side. The upside of the N200's design though is whisper-quiet operation. If things get hotter, you can switch between high and low cooling modes using the two-speed, in-line fan controller. The fan purrs along at this setting, but that's hardly noticeable over the laptop exhaust fan, which will anyway be roaring away at full blast.