Best Laptop Cooling Pads in 2023 – our top picks
If you’re looking for the best laptop cooling pads, we’ve got everything you need to know right here.
For all their portability benefits, laptops have some pretty glaring limitations, not least when it comes to internal cooling. You may be asking whether laptop cooling pads are good for gaming laptops, but the reality is that if you own any type of laptop, chances are it has felt hot to the touch under heavy loads. Whether that’s running graphically intensive tasks like photo/video editing, streaming video in 4K, or having one too many browser tabs open at one time.
While cooling is seen as more of a necessity with powerful laptops, even the best gaming laptops’ coolers don’t typically dissipate heat as efficiently as traditional tower PCs, especially with the trend of housing ever more powerful components in ever-smaller chassis. While these temperatures generally fall within an acceptable range set by manufacturers, as an owner, it’s difficult to shake off the idea that they may cause permanent damage, or less alarming, throttle performance, or lead to unwanted shutdowns and lost work.
Fortunately, third-party accessories are here to help mitigate all this, particularly the laptop cooling pad. Extra fans pumping fresh air to your device and heat-dissipating materials can do wonders to keep those laptop innards running cool. From quiet and silent laptop coolers to more basic laptop stands with a fan, we’ve got you covered right here with our top picks from the market today.
Products at a Glance
How we picked
For this guide, we looked at several laptop cooling pads from different manufacturers, compared them, and picked the ones we thought were the best. The cooling pads have been selected based on features like number of fans, weight, height adjustments, and other important aspects. Further, we’re always looking for new products to add to our guides and keep them updated – so check back here again for new updates.
Best Laptop Cooling Pads in 2023 – our top picks
- Three fans
- Two USB hubs
- Mediocre appearance
If you want the best laptop cooling pad without spending too much, then you should look at the Havit HV-F2056.
The cooling pad is ideal for 15.6-inch to 17-inch laptops, which makes it useful for smaller laptops, like Chromebooks, and bigger gaming laptops as well.
Further, the pad comes with three fans that promise to cool your laptop without making too much noise. Plus, it has a mesh design, which should give you a stable surface to place your laptop on and aid heat dissipation as well.
Coming to connectivity options, the cooling pad has two USB hubs, which have a slot for an extra USB – so connecting cables shouldn’t be a problem.
As far as portability is concerned, the cooling pad has a slim profile and weighs only 1.4 pounds, which, combined with a lightweight laptop, should form a portable setup for you.
- Single 200mm fan
- 20 adjustable RGB lights
- Height adjustable
- Slightly heavy
If you are looking for a cooling pad for your gaming laptop, then the Thermaltake Massive 20 RGB is a solid option.
To start with, the pad is large enough to accommodate 19-inch laptops, so you should be able to fit in a 17-inch or an 18-inch laptop comfortably. Plus, it is height adjustable, which should let you raise it to a comfortable angle.
Further, the cooling pad comes with a single 200mm fan, which promises optimal airflow and good thermal performance. Plus, the cooling pad is topped with a steel mesh, which should tweak heat dissipation.
As the name suggests, this pad has about 20 RGB lights, which you can control with the built‐in control panel. So if you’re going for the “gamer” aesthetic, the cooling pad will match some of the best gaming laptops. You can also adjust the fan settings through this panel, which should give you a more customized experience.
- Four fans
- Two USB connections
- Compatible with 19-inch laptops
- Not height adjustable
If you want a cooling pad without spending too much money, then the KLIM Wind is a great choice.
To begin with, the cooling pad can accommodate laptops as small as 11 inches and as big as 19 inches, which means you can use this pad with multiple devices. Plus, to keep your laptop stable, the pad has two hind legs and front pegs for good inclination.
As far as cooling is concerned, the pad has four fans, which promise to keep cool down all areas of the laptop. Plus, with multiple fans, you should be able to get your laptop cooled within a few minutes.
Coming to the connectivity options, the cooling pad offers two USB ports, which should give you an extra port for more flexibility.
- Six fans
- Lap and desk use
- Height adjustable
- Fans may be noisy
If you want a laptop cooling pad with RGB lights, then we think the TopMate C12 is a solid option.
The laptop cooling pad has RGB light strips laced on all four sides, which turn on when the stand is connected to power. The lights have eight modes, which you can adjust as per your preferences.
Coming to the performance, the pad has six fans – three large ones and three small ones, which should help cool down your laptop without much effort. You can control the speed and mode of the fans and RGB lights through the LCD display panel, which should give you a more customized experience.
As far as compatibility is concerned, the pad can accommodate laptops ranging from 10 inches to 17.3 inches. Plus, the cooling pad is designed for lap use as well as desk use, which should give you considerable flexibility. You can also adjust height, much like some of the best laptop stands, so you can set it up for a comfortable experience.
- Single 230mm fan
- Compatible with 17-inch laptops
- Comparatively expensive
With an established reputation in desktop PC components, notably cooling accessories, Cooler Master leverages its cooling know-how to deliver a product geared towards laptop users with the Cooler Master NotePal XL.
An absolutely massive 230 mm fan takes on the brunt of the cooling work and to great effect, producing impressive airflow across the pad’s entire surface. The fan features near-silent optimized blades with an 89.8 CFM airflow rating, neon-blue X-shaped LED, and an RPM count that ranges from 600-1000 RPM. The result is top-tier cooling performance, alongside quiet operation, dropping down to as low as 19 dBA, or roughly the volume as a whisper or the sound of leaves rustling.
The pad supports laptops up to 17 inches and has a USB hub fitted on the back with three USB 2.0 ports and a fan speed dial. A full-metal mesh platform sits atop the fan, and a vent circulates air through the front for extra heat dissipation.
For all the pad’s impressive cooling performance and whisper-quiet operation, the Cooler Master NotePal XL ranks slightly lower than the Kootek due to minimal adjustment options. Other than two-flip anti-slip feet mounted on the rear that raise the angle by only a handful of degrees, there’s no way to adjust the pad in any meaningful sense. The pad’s tilted position is ergonomically-minded, but we’d have liked a bit more versatility to find the right fit.
For those that want quiet operation, the Cooler Master NotePal XL is a good bet. The price is very reasonable for the cooling performance on offer here.
How to pick the best laptop cooling pad
While hunting for the right cooling pad for your laptop, here are some things to consider –
Whether you’re working with a compact 12-inch device or a monstrous 17-inch beast, pay close attention to the lower and upper laptop size limit for any cooling pads you might be interested in adding to your setup.
It’s vital to check that your entire laptop sits on the cooling pad to ensure proper ventilation and ward off unwanted movement or unsteadiness when in use. A laptop that sits beyond the edges of the cooling pad will benefit from some cooling, but the gains pale in comparison to what you can expect from a pad that covers the laptop’s entire chassis. As such, check the dimensions before buying. These can usually be found on manufacturer websites.
While much rarer, laptops sized above 17-in do exist, like some of the best 18-inch laptops come with a large 18-inch display. If you own one, pay even closer attention to whether a laptop cooling pad can accommodate such a big device.
Comfort and Adjustments
Laptops lack the ergonomics of their desktop brethren. Cooling pads with slanted profiles only add to this disparity and can exacerbate pains and strains linked to bad ergonomic positioning. To that end, we highly recommend laptop cooling pads with adjustment options, notably the angle and height. Added extras such as anti-slip feet and front-mounted stoppers help in that respect too.
These are the tools to hone in on a position that offers more comfort. Customization mileage varies from model to model – some provide a great range of viewing angles, while others may be limited to one or two. Ideally, you’d want a laptop pad that doesn’t have a preset position, allowing more scope to find the exact fit.
Similarly, specific laptop cooling pads are better suited to desktop use, while others shine when used on the lap. Opt for one that aligns best with where you’ll be using the laptop.
Fans and Noise Levels
Fans invariably involve noise, and as a consequence, cooling pads can indeed pump out quite a din. For most, this shouldn’t be too much of an issue, but for those that need a quiet working environment, be it for video calls or audio work, these can be a real bane.
Fan speed (RPM), fan size, and pad build quality, notably, the chassis’ materials and heat-dissipating properties play a part. Similarly, how hard a cooling pad has to work also depends on the heat produced by the laptop – web browsing and gaming place drastically different demands on the device.
Manufacturers generally share the noise level range you can expect from a given model, listed in decibels. We also recommend cooling pads with fan speed controls for those worried about noise levels. These allow the user to find the right balance between cooling and noise.
Is laptop cooling worth it?
Laptop cooling pads are definitely worth it, if you are using an old laptop or gaming laptop that is prone to overheating. Using a cooling pad will allow you to get the most out of your laptop, preventing it from shutting down or becoming too hot to touch.
Do laptop cooling pads really work?
Most of the time, they do! Especially if you pick the right pad for your system. Investing in a laptop cooling pad is definitely worth it if you plan on running games or high-processing software.
Which company is best for laptop cooling pad?
There are many options when it comes to laptop cooling pads. Top brands include TopMate, Cooler Master, Targus and Kootek.
The best laptop cooling pad for you purely boils down to personal preference. But, any cooling pad from one of these reputable brands above is definitely a safe option.
What is the disadvantage of laptop cooling pad?
Well, some may find that the cooling pad fans can potentially blow dust into your laptop. While this isn’t a major issue in the short term, we would advise checking your laptop, as usual, for any dust build-up to ensure it’s running at its best.
If you want the best laptop cooling pad without spending too much, then we think that the Havit HV-F2056 cooling pad is a solid option. The laptop can accommodate 15.6-inch to 17-inch laptops, which means it should be suitable for most people. Plus, you get three fans, which, along with the mesh design, should give you sufficient and effective heat dissipation. The cooling pad also has two USB hubs, which might come in handy. And the pad is quite lightweight, which makes it portable.