Chalk up another time I need to be sure not to judge a book by its cover. While this unit is simple, and at first I was thinking, "Oh great, another laptop angle changer that isn't worth its weight to even bother to deal with", here that simply is not the case. Whether on your lap or on the table, as long as you don't move it around too much you should be fine, and you will experience some of the best temperature reductions I have seen in this segment of coolers. I know Cooler Master isn't really designing these specifically for me, but it really seems that they listened to what we want in this sort of product and in the simplest fashion, really delivered big time.
While the X-Slim is made to be silent, simple, easy to use and completely functional in the main concepts when designing this cooler, it only missed on two small points as far as I can tell. I can get over that there isn't an LED to show me it's on, or that it doesn't offer extra USB connectivity, but there are these two things that I find may be a deal breaker for some. The first one is the "locking mechanisms" for the flip out feet. The tension is loose and makes it easy to flip them out and back down when you need to, but for me they are too loose when I just want to move the unit back a half of an inch, and I hear the leg click as it closes on its own. Once in place the feet were fine, but you have to be sure to fully lift this and the laptop even if just to move it slightly.
The second issue I have is a personal one, but something that should still matter. The only way to gain access to the fan to clean it is by removing the top mesh panel. The tabs that lock it in place are easy enough to get undone and the sides of the mesh pop right up. The issue is it is stuck in a track at the top and bottom and I couldn't remove mine without severely bending the mesh. That sort of makes this a disposable fan cooler if you can't clean it easily.
That being said, the X-Slim is priced right in my opinion. No matter where you look currently at the ten or so locations I found the X-Slim, it teeters on both sides of the $20 mark and for what it offers in cooling it to me is worth every penny. Even with the small flaws I found, I can forgive it on something that is going to cost me less than what a tube of thermal paste is going to cost me shipped to my door, I mean why not right? Just the five degree drop across the board is impressive enough for me to say yes to anyone on the lookout for a simple laptop cooler that can actually cool a laptop. Cooler Master showed me that for less than $20 you can get what you need to out of a notebook cooling solution!
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