I have to admit that this was an impulse buy when I saw it in one of the bargain baskets at the entrance to Fry's Electronics. Although I have not had problems with my laptop over heating, sometimes it does get a bit warm. For $4.99, it just seemed to be too good a deal to pass up.
At about 12.25 by 9.5 inches, it is a bit small for my large 17" (diagonal) laptop and a bit small for my 10.2" netbook, but it is a good compromise which works alright for both of them.
This cooling pad is very light weight (about 16 ounces). It operates on 5 Volts DC, powered by connecting a supplied USB Type A cable to the laptop and a barrel connector to the cooling pad. I like the fact that the cable disconnects for ease of storage and transport.
The dual 1500 RPM fans generate 28 cubic feet of air flow per minute at a very quiet noise level of 25 dBA.
The neutral black matte finish is a style match for most Windows based laptops.
If you are very comfortable with the existing height of your work surface, the extra one inch in height that the cooling pad creates might be a bit annoying. On the other hand, if you find your work surface too low, you will benefit from the added height.
There are soft foam rubber feet on the top and bottom of the unit which reduce slippage and scratching. The COOLMAX not only results in a cooler laptop, it also protects your work surface from heat damage. Although designed for use on a table or desk, I think it would work well enough for casual use on your lap. However, if you anticipate a significant amount of lap usage you might look at other softer options.
This is a nice cooling pad for medium sized notebook.