Zalman ZM-NC1000 Ultra-Quiet Notebook Cooler
With computing power ever on the increase, heat issues can affect laptop computers just as much as conventional desktop machines. Because such high-power components are squeezed inside such a small case, it is inevitable that the heat has to escape somewhere, and invariably manufacturers resort to small, high speed fans to keep their components cool.
Even then, safe cooling is not always assured - especially if the machine is used on soft surfaces such as carpets, duvets or trouser-legs! Anyone who has ever used a laptop literally "on their lap", will know just how hot these computers can get.
As the world-respected leaders in desktop cooling solutions, Zalman have now designed cooling products specifically for laptop users: the ZM-NC1000 ultra-quiet notebook cooler. We think every laptop user should have one! They give peace of mind that your laptop will not overheat and crash (or melt!). They improve long-term reliability because the laptop is running cooler. In most cases, they cut down on the noise from your laptop fans, because the fans don't need to run as fast to maintain a safe temperature. Last but not least, they raise the rear of your laptop, making it much easier to type on its keyboard without worrying about wrist-strain.
The ZM-NC1000 comes with two centrifugal fans which give excellent airflow to the base of your laptop, with minimum noise. The speed of the fans can be adjusted according to how hot your machine is running and how quietly you would like the fans to run. The products comes in a stylish black finish and will accommodate the vast majority of laptops on the market, up to 15.4 inch screen size.
Because the fans are powered by USB, there are no extra power supplies or wires to worry about, other than one cable (included) which connects to a USB port on your PC or Macintosh. You don't lose a USB port because the cooler has one to replace the one being used on the machine (see picture). And because they are lightweight, the Zalman notebook coolers can easily be transported with your notebook so you can use them anywhere - not just in your office!
Underside view showing fans
Rear corner view of Zalman ZM-NC1000 showing laptop in place
The laptop keyboard is raised for improved ergonomics
|Maximum laptop screen size||15.4 inches|
|Dimensions W x D x H (mm)||330 x 308 x 40|
|USB socket location||Right-hand side|
|USB cable storage compartment||No|
|Materials||Pure aluminium and ABS plastic|
|Noise level||18.0 - 25.5 dBA ± 10%|
|Input voltage||5 volts (via notebook USB port)|
|Fan type||Dual centrifugal fans, hypro sleeve bearing|
|Fan speed||1100 - 1500 rpm ± 10%|
|Fan current consumption||0.28 A|
Great product, couple of minor caveats with 15
I purchased one of these for a 15" MacBook Pro, which runs hot due to issues with Linux video drivers, and although it is a great product, there are a couple of points worth noting: -
- It is advertised as suitable for machines up to 15.4" screen size, but the feet on the MacBook are set wider than the rubber grips on the stand, so the MacBook can slide down the stand. QuietPC do another Zalman stand for up to 17" devices, and that might have been a better choice.
- More importantly, the MacBook sits /very/ low on the stand, and you can hear that the fan is under load as the airflow is limited by the lack of clearance. Raising the rear of the MacBook by even a couple of millimetres causes the fan whine to drop immediately.
None of these points is intended as a criticism of the stand, which is *HUGE* improvement over the ludicrously loud Belkin monstrosity that I purchased it to replace, but rather as a tip to anyone with a similar machine to mine. The built in fans on the MacBook are no longer running flat out at 6,200prm, which was what I wanted, so am happy with the cooling.
I'm going to buy some self-adhesive rubber feet, which should give just enough clearance to increase the airflow and reduce the noise. The stand is not silent, but at the low end of its fan speed range and with clear airflow it is very, very quiet.
Elegant, Top Quality Laptop Cooler
I bought this to replace an Akasa product that was getting a little on the whining side. I can't fault this Zalman cooler, it's a good quality build, elegant and well-featured. The best thing is that it has a fan control on the side, which on the lowest setting is hardly audible. Even on that setting, feeling under the laptop, there is plenty of cool air blowing out. The other good thing is the area of the vent holes. On the Akasa the cool air covered barely a third of the laptop; on here I would say all vital components are given a fair breeze.
I like Zalman products for their sturdy flair and would always recommend them. If you need a very quiet, but reliable cooler, you couldn't do better than this. Top marks from me, and top marks to Quiet PC for reliable next day delivery, as usual.