Review: MacAlly icePad

by on September 9, 2004

After reviewing many laptop stands, including the Laptop Desk and the Laptop Desk Ultralite, we had the chance to take a look at MacAlly’s offering. The icePad features the same folding design of the Laptop Desks, but is designed to match Apple’s portables.

With its white appearance, and grey rubber elastomer, the icePad will match any iBook or PowerBook setup. Channels on the icePad circulate air around underneath the computer, to keep it running cool. The icePad has two “modes”: one is for used on a person’s lap, and the other is intended for use at a desk. The icePad lays flat across a person’s lap, preventing that burning sensation caused by PowerBooks that run hot. On a desk, it folds, creating an adjustable wedge, to place the laptop at a much more comfortable angle.

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MacAlly icePad Desk Mode

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MacAlly icePad Lap Mode

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MacAlly icePad Bottom

Desktop Mode

Desktop mode features 5 different angles, so users will be able to find the most comfortable angle. The non-skid surface prevents laptops from sliding off of the icePad and your desk. The icePad essentially folds in half and is propped in place by a plastic arm.

Lap Mode

Lap mode can not only be used on a person’s lap, but also on a bed or a passenger seat in a car (don’t use while driving). The main purpose of the icePad in this position is to absorb heat from the bottom of PowerBooks and iBooks. A small area on each side can be used as a mouse pad, perfect for any tiny travel mouse.

In our tests, the icePad worked quite well, although we did have some gripes. It is somewhat bulky in many computer bags, taking up almost about 1/3 of the space of an iBook. The plastic support arm that keeps the icePad at a certain angle in desktop mode felt somewhat flimsy by itself. When the icePad was used on a desk or when it was used on a lap with a computer, it felt sturdy overall.

The icePad, like many other white accessories, collects dirt and lint easily, but can be wiped or washed off.

The icePad does come with a 3 year warranty, and is priced similar to many other products like it. If you want to have a convertible laptop stand that matches Apple’s portables, the icePad might just be the thing you need.

The One-Sentence Verdict™

The icePad is a decent product that matches iBooks and PowerBooks quite well.

Pros: Unique design allows lap and desk use, causes laptop to run cooler, matches Apple’s portables, folds easily for travel, and has a 3 year warranty

Cons: Bulky, feels somewhat cheap, and collects dirt easily

The Facts

4/5Product: icePad
Company: MacAlly
Price: $29.95 (list)

This post has been filed in 'Book Accessories and Reviews