Targus Chill Mat AWE55US
The Targus Lap Chill Mat AWE55US has had some mixed reviews during its lifetime. Does this chill mat actually chill your laptop? Well, I think Targus may be a little over confident with themselves for using the word “chill” as part of the name of this product.
If you are wondering if there is any difference between a “chill mat” and a “cooling pad” then I can tell you that they are pretty much the same thing. Both are designed for doing the same type of job although I would say “cooling” is a more accurate word to describe what this product does. Certainly, it does do as it is supposed to by cooling your laptop and maybe dropping the temperature by a couple of degrees but this really does depend on the type of laptop you have.
For some, the fans on this chill mat are not powerful enough to create enough airflow to remove the heat. This tends to be when used with the largest of the laptops on the market. Then again there are a high percentage of people who swear by the efficiency of cooling by the AWE55US. These more positive comments have come from those who own small to medium laptops. So that is something to take into consideration before buying this cooling pad.
The Targus Lap Chill Mat AWE55US has a strong and sturdy fixed wedge shaped design. It is tilted at just enough of an angle so that when you place your laptop onto it the screen is raised to a more comfortable and acceptable level. This is very handy if you are someone who works off their lap quite often. When doing this what tends to happen is you hunch over your laptop looking down on it. This in time may cause neck and back aches.
The slight raise at the back of the Targus AWE55US may not totally eradicate this issue but it certainly makes a difference. The front edge sits 0.75 inch above your desk, gradually rising to 2.2 inches in the rear. The wedge shape also helps with the airflow at the back of your laptop. More space has been created between your laptop and your lap or other surface. Any heat created from your computer will immediately be funneled through the hollow area of the cooling pad and out the sides leaving cool air to circulate. The huge amount of space created by the wedge design helps to pull air in from the sides which really cools things off fast.
Like some of the other laptop coolers out there on the market maybe this Targus could have been designed to be adjustable so that the back can be raised a little more adding even more comfort. Then again, would that have jeopardized its sturdiness?
There are two good sized fans fitted within the hollow of the unit so that whatever surface you place it on the fans will be protected from any damage. This is another reason for lap workers to take notice as some of the other chill mats on the market have their fans protruding out the back making it very difficult to work off of your lap without the fans rubbing against your thighs or jamming on a piece of clothing. The fan blades on the Targus chill mat are enclosed on all sides and so they are less likely to break off
The fans do a pretty good job of eradicating any heat emitted by your laptop and as an extra bonus they also make very little
noise. In fact, you cannot hear them working at all! For many, this will be a huge plus especially for anyone who happens to work in libraries a lot, i.e., students.
If you regularly work off your lap then you are going to need to be as comfortable as possible. Gone are the days when you would place your laptop cooler pad on your lap only to have its hard plastic (or metal), surface edges dig into your thighs. You won’t have this problem with the Targus lap chill mat AWE55US because it has a soft cloth like material on the underside adding comfort so that you are able to lay your laptop on your lap for hours.
Compared to other cooling pads the Targus AWE55US is a pretty good size at 12? x 15.1? x 2.2? meaning it will accommodate a 17” laptop with no or very little overhang. It is perfectly suited for large laptops, so take note. If your laptop is 15” or smaller you may want to find a cooler that better fits that size. For its size it only weighs in at 2.6 pounds and so is fine for those of you who travel and work although make sure you have a large enough carry bag to put it in.
All in all the Targus Lap Chill Mat AWE55US is a great buy for regular laptop users. It provides a comfortable and ergonomic work surface to keep you and your laptop cool. It disperses heat, using dual fans to provide ventilation and the ergonomic tilt makes typing easy while the soft neoprene material provides cushioned comfort on your lap.
The two fans run quietly and stimulate constant airflow around the lap area. There are four rubber stops on the face of the chill mat to prevent the laptop from slipping although these little stops tend to pop out and can be lost so be wary of this.
I think the people that will really benefit from this cooler pad are those who like to watch movies in bed, work off their lap, work on a couch and generally like to be comfortable in seemingly uncomfortable positions.
- Protects lap or work surface from heat.
- Dual fans help disperse laptop heat for improved functionality; extends the life of the laptop.
- Has a hollow design to allow for better airflow.
- Accommodates up to 17” notebooks.
- The fans are protected by an enclosed, durable construction that will keep dust out and any damage at bay.
- Soft neoprene exterior provides added comfort on your lap.
- The Targus AWE55US is very power efficient and will have minimal impact on your battery.
- Limited One Year Warranty.
Dimension: 2.2 x 15.1 x 12 inches
Material: Plastic and Soft neoprene exterior
Compatibility: Supports all 14? – 15? laptops and up to 17?
Power Supply: USB
Warranty: Limited one year
Pros and Cons
- Does a good job of cooling the laptop even though it doesn’t move a huge amount of air.
- The clever design positions the laptop at a convenient angle and the hollow in the center allows good airflow.
- The whole unit is solid and sturdy.
- The fans are ultra quiet and are protected by being enclosed on all sides.
- Light enough for travel and not too bulky to fit into a large carry case.
- Has a simple and elegant design. Looks quite modern and blends in with the environment.
- The soft neoprene material provides cushioned comfort on your lap.
- The fan intake design draws air from the sides rather than from underneath.
- Powered by USB and is battery life friendly.
- Has a short USB cable, but still long enough to plug into a port, so it doesn’t end up trailing all over the desk.
- You can store excess cords inside the pad.
- There’s no power switch.
- The rubber stops that hold your laptop in place tend to pop out and can be lost.
I was house-sitting and tried out an earlier version of this product by Targus; I liked it so much during my stay that I purchased this one and was more than pleased to find that this model had 4 little rubber bumps to help keep the laptop from sliding down if you move around a lot. (The earlier one only has 1 bump). It’s great for watching movies in bed; I love how the fan (which you connect by USB right to your laptop) is so quiet you can barely hear it. It’s very sturdy and comfy, yet lightweight. I can hide it by my nightstand. It’s a really simple and elegant design and I highly recommend it.
By Rani Goel
The produce works just like it’s described. Keeps my computer cool. Sometimes I don’t even plug the fan in; I just use it as a flat surface to use my laptop on my lap. I have the Mac Book Pro and the aluminum can get really warm, but I don’t like working at desks, so this is a great option. My only wish is it was a bit sleeker so I could slip it in my backpack and take it with me to campus or somewhere other than home. There really isn’t a fan option out there that you can do this with, though, so I’m very pleased with what I got.
Check out: How To Choose A Laptop Cooler Pad