Best Cooling Pads for MacBook Pro iMore 2020
Being tech bloggers, we travel everywhere with our laptops and know how hot they can get, especially when we're running programs with heavy processing use. We have tested many and found the perfect way to cool the heat from your MacBook Pro. Our tried-and-true favorite is the Thermaltake Massive TM.
Best Overall: Thermaltake Massive TM
The Massive TM by Thermaltake is a desktop-style cooling pad that's ideal for any size Mac laptop, from the 12-inch MacBook to the 16-inch MacBook Pro (and 17-inch notebooks, too), thanks to adjustable sizes that keep your device in place. It has two separate fans that draw cool air in from the bottom and push warm air out through the sides. You can set up automatic cooling with four separate heat sensors, or you can regulate the temperature manually, including giving it a turbo cooling boost. It also sports retractable feet, so you can adjust the angle of your laptop.
I've been using my Massive TM for a while now, and I've really been putting it through its paces. The one thing that makes it stand out from other cooling pads is its ability to track how warm my MacBook Pro is getting and then allow me to turbo boost the cooling process if things get out of hand.
The pad is large — maybe even a little too large. It's big enough to fit a 17-inch notebook, so my 13-inch MacBook Pro has plenty of space. The aluminum panel on top has four adjustable posts that you can slide around to fit your laptop. This keeps my MacBook Pro snugly in place without anchoring it on the cooling pad. The pegs are also spring-loaded, so if you accidentally set your notebook on top of one, it just flattens out instead of making your keyboard crooked.
When you set your laptop on the cooling pad, it senses the temperature. There are four sensor probes so that you can isolate any problem areas. When the fans are running, it'll cool your device by as much as 20 degrees. If you notice that, even with the regular fans running, your laptop isn't cooling down (like, if you're working extra hard with a particularly heavy processing program), you can hit the Turbo button. It will speed up the fans and send a burst of air upward.
Probably my favorite aspect of the Massive TM is the temperature display panel.
When the fans are running, they are relatively quiet as far as cooling fans go. I'm not saying they are whisper quiet, but you won't have to turn up the volume on your computer when they are running.
There are also retractable feet at the bottom of the pad, which allow you to adjust the angle that your laptop sits. The feet themselves have adjustable height, too. So, if you need a sharper angle, like to watch a movie, you can really get some tilt.
The fan is powered by a USB cable. It comes with a very short (I think it's about 8-inches) USB-to-USB cable. If you have the 2016 or later MacBook Pro, you'll need a USB A to USB C adapter, or at least a really long USB to USB cable so you can plug it into a power outlet.
Probably my favorite aspect of the Massive TM is the temperature display panel. You always know whether your laptop is running hot, thanks to the LED display. If you're in the middle of a game and notice that your MacBook Pro is running at about 85 degrees, you can turn on the fans and cool it down.
- Adjustable typing positioning
- Fits almost all size laptops
- Targeted cooling for different areas
- Turbo boost cooling for extra hot spots
- Temperature sensor for auto on/off
- Pricier than most
- Portability limitations
The perfect cooling fan for most people
The Massive TM has lots of fantastic features, like a temperature gauge, adjustable feet, and a turbo boost so you can cool things down when you're working extra hard. It's also adjustable for better positioning while you type.
Best Value: KLIM Bamboo Laptop Cooling Pad
This cooling pad is not only nicely priced, but it also has a unique look. Constructed from eco-friendly bamboo, this one will elevate your style as it elevates your laptop. Any laptop up to the 16-inch MacBook Pro will fit; you can even go larger though it will hang slightly over the edges. Equipped with two 130 millimeter fans, each spinning at 1300 rotations per minute, this cooling pad can extend the life of your laptop by keeping it from overheating.
- Decorative and good-looking
- Simple, streamlined style
- Not as feature-rich as pricier options
For its price, you really can't go wrong with the KLIM Bamboo Laptop Cooling Pad.
Best for Travel: Havit RGB
This is the perfect MacBook Pro cooling pad for traveling. It's got three quiet fans for wide-spread cooling and an ultra-slim profile. There are two holders behind the back, which allows two different height levels.
The Havit's minimalist design makes it ideal for travel with your MacBook Pro. It's ultra-slim but can still handle laptops up to 17 inches. It also comes equipped with additional USB ports so you can use it as a portable hub.
- Ultra-slim and portable
- Perfect for travel
- Adjustable height
- Not as durable as some
Best for Travel
Portable enough to slip into your laptop bag with plenty of cooling power.
With all of its convenient features, the Thermaltake Massive TM is easily the best cooler/cooling pad for your MacBook Pro. If you're in the market for one, the Massive TM should be your first consideration, since it's effective, ergonomic, quiet, and does its job well.
It has all of the features you'd want, including adjustable height, automatic or manual cooling, turbo boost cooling, and temperature sensing probes. Any laptop up to 17 inches will fit on the Thermaltake Massive TM. You even get an LED display to keep you apprised of your laptop's temperature.
Credits — The team that worked on this guide
Lory Gil works on her laptop about 50% of her day and knows just how hot the MacBook Pro can get. She's a big fan of keepin' things cool.
Luke Filipowicz is one of the coolest people around and knows a thing or two about how to stay that way, especially when it comes to laptops.
Karen S. Freeman spends way too much time burning up the internet. She knows you must keep things cool, though.
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