Thermaltake is back at it in the laptop cooling game with a new pair of coolers that carry the Massive naming. With a name like Massive we would expect theses to be very large, but in fact they are compact coolers, and fit laptops that have seventeen inch, or smaller screens. While one of this series offers a single fan and a pair of onboard speakers, we will be getting to that one soon enough. Today we are looking at the other version, where cooling takes precedence, and it offers two fans with blue LEDs to add a bit of flair and should be able to deliver enough air flow to drop our test laptop a couple of degrees without much issue.
Thermaltake figured they could offer both versions that have similar looks, but with completely different feature sets to offer something on both sides of the fence. This is a great marketing strategy. For those on the go, or who have roommates, maybe sound blasting into the room or wherever you may be isn't the best idea. For those people who have the need to cool their laptop, and may want more than the basic height adjustments, well this version of the Massive series of coolers is right up your alley.
Today we are looking at the Massive 14 Squared, and as the name implies, it offers two fans to cool the laptop placed upon it. This isn't the average "rinky-dink" featureless cooler though. For what appears very basic upon first glance, actually have quite a few features that a lot of potential users will enjoy.
Considering other coolers that are similar in what they offer will cost well over $50, I think Thermaltake may have put together a really good option to those who need additional cooling for their laptop, and by the time we are done, you should be able to see why.
Specifications, Availability and Pricing
As far as the chart above is concerned, it tells you just about everything you need to know to make an educated purchase, just from what is listed. It shows the compatibility for the Massive 14 Squared to accommodate notebooks from ten inch screens up to seventeen inch screens. With a width of 382mm, a depth of 262mm, it will just support a seventeen inch laptop. With the feet tucked under this cooler, it will only stand 26mm in height at the back, slightly less in the front due to the slight degree of angle offered as it sits flat. All told, with the pair of 140mm fans, this plastic and steel mesh combination weighs in at only 663 grams.
The pair of fans has nine clear blades each. They are clear to allow the blue LEDs in the hubs to Glow out to the tips of the fins. Each fan will draw 0.46A at 5V to offer a maximum speed of 1200RPM. This cooler also comes with a dial speed controller, allowing the fans to step down to 700RPM at the low-end, and the switch even offers an off position. The fans will make a slight bit of noise with a 21dBA rating, but delivering up to 58.97CFM is quite high for most coolers out there. Also most coolers will not even list a static pressure value, but since the fans have to push through the mesh and into tiny holes in the bottom of the notebook, the 1.01 mmH2O rating will help in that department.
As we look around for pricing and availability information, the first couple of pages are filled with nothing but hits from the AU market. It may be in the way the naming is presented, but no matter how it was searched, the Massive 14 Squared, or Massive 14 Squared, or Massive 14 2, it all comes up with very little other than news blasts.
Digging deeper in the search engines of well know e-tailers, I was able to locate this cooler for sale at Amazon.com. There they are asking $43.12 US dollars, and it seems to be the only listing that we could dig up currently. As with anything, competition brings pricing down, so it may pay to wait a bit of the price is out of reach, but from what we have already seen, the Massive 14 Squared is well worth the investment.
Packaging, Accessories, and Documentation
In typical Thermaltake packaging of a black box with the red accent stripe we have the Massive 14 Squared. There is a large image of the cooler powered up and below it, off to the left, five features are listed, some easily visible, some hidden due to the image used.
The back of the packaging is the only other place you will find information, as all the thin sides of the packaging are solid black. The same features found on the front are repeated at the left in many languages, there is a specs chart under a diagram of how the cooler is designed to work, and features are shown and described at the right.
Opening the packaging we find the cooler inside of a cellophane bag to keep it from abrading against the inside of the box. To the right is a cardboard insert that has the cable inside of it, and there is some paperwork under the cooler as well.
Under the cooler you will find the paperwork guiding the use of the Massive 14 Squared, and there is also the Warranty insert to the right covering the group of "all other products" for a term of one year.
This piece of paper will unfold once more, but it just offers more translations of the images at the top. Those images show what comes in the box, and the larger image shows off the controls and also shows the cable connected between them.
As the paperwork showed in the last image, you are also given a USB 2.0 to USB 2.0 extension cable that is roughly two foot long. This cable will allow you to power the Massive 14 Squared, and also allow the extra USB 2.0 port to transfer signal to the notebook.
Thermaltake Massive 14 Squared Notebook Cooler
Out of all the packaging, this cooler is obviously black, but there is a mix of plastic around the outside with a large honeycomb mesh used to protect the pair of 140mm fans under it. At the front edge you can see two flip out supports on either side of the painted on Thermaltake name and logo.
Getting much closer to get a better idea of how open the structure is as well as being able to see that there are folds added to the mesh to give it added structural support so that the weight of the device sitting on it does not push the mesh into the fan blades.
As for those flip out supports on the front, while the leg is plastic, to keep from damaging a much more expensive laptop when rubbing against it, Thermaltake has added rubber pads to rest against the edge of your laptop.
Backing way out, and now moving around to the left side of the cooler, you can see the way it sits; it offers just a slight angle to add a slight ergonomic effect to the keyboard as well as cooling.
As we zoom in much closer on the left side, we find the control panel. There are two USB 2.0 ports, although one needs to be used to make it function. There is also a dial speed controller for the fans, and the tiny switch next to it will allow the LED lighting to be turned on and off.
As for the right side, as well as the back of this Massive cooler, the top extends a bit past the base, and you can see the tunnel the fans can draw through at the back. As for more ports or controls, we saw what was available in the last image.
Under the cooler there are protected, but very open intakes for these 140mm fans and allows them to be able to push the sort of rated specs we saw in the beginning. At the front edge there are rubber pads, but at the back, the pads are on the flat side of the pop-out feet.
Extending the feet will give you the typical half of an inch increase that we are accustomed to finding in keyboards and other notebook coolers.
Instead of using some bar system for support like others have tried, Thermaltake takes a different approach to adding a third level of height adjustment. There is an inner section of foot that can still be extended that raised the back of the cooler just over an inch from the stock ride height.
Inside the Massive 14 Squared and Setup
As with most things that hit the desk here, we tear it down to look to see what is going on inside. Here this single PCB is in charge of the USB ports, the fan controller, and the LED switch.
A NEC choke and a couple of caps are all that is needed. These are used to supply and regulate the fan power to the pair of headers at the top. The USB and LED switch are just wired directly through traces in the PCB.
With the top half removed, we can also now see the 140mm fans. Both are made with clear blades and hubs, and both sport the model number of A1418L05S.
To hold the mesh section into the plastic top frame, there are tabs of steel that pass through grooves, and then get folded over to securely attach the steel mesh. This is done tight enough as not to rattle, and we hear no evidence of this be a source of noise.
We have now put the Massive 14 Squared back together, and have set a fifteen inch laptop on the top of it. The support in the front aren't so needed at this setting of the feet, but there is a bit of the cooler still exposed to offer support for larger laptops.
Playing off the last image, there is a drastic difference in height when adding the first extension of the feet. This setting will allow the monitor to be raised a bit, allowing for better back posture, as well as adding a more ergonomic approach to the keys.
If the table you happen to be using is quite a bit lower, and you still wanted some more height, Thermaltake makes it happen. With both sections of feet now extended, the back is raised well over an inch in height, and allows your hands to float across the higher angled keyboard.
Making the connection is as simple as it gets. Plug one end of the USB 2.0 cable into a free port on the laptop, and then plug the other end into one of the two USB ports on the Massive 14 Squared. At this point we also dialed up the fan speed, and made sure to turn on the LEDs you can see slowing on the glass.
While adding the blue LEDs does add a bit of flash when seen like this, without a laptop on it, the thing is, in reality, you cannot see it from the top and unless you get at a strange angle to the side of it, you cannot see it around the cooler. While attractive in this state, they are sort of pointless when in use.
The Thermaltake Massive 14 Squared has been a pleasure to use. I found myself typically using it with the legs fully extended in the back, and in this orientation, the front supports at the top definitely earn their stripes as they keep the much heavier laptop securely placed above them. There is a high level of air flow that is coming through this cooler, but with it being allowed to blow anywhere it wants, it seems to follow the paths of least resistance. The good thing about that with this design is that the fans are placed so close together, that with something like our fifteen inch testing laptop, there is no escape, and the air is forced through the venting, and could even be felt through the gaps in the keys. During the testing, the Massive 14 Squared is able to lower the thermal results running Prime95 for an hour by four degrees. With the results taken into average, this is one of the better performing solutions out there.
The design and build are strong, well thought out, and in its finished product, very easy to use. Setup could not be easier. Once that is done, you also will realize you now may have lost the port on the laptop, but have gained it back with the coolers two USB 2.0 ports. The dial is easy to use to set the fans at any level we needed, but even when allowed to run at full speed, the audio result was at 36dB with our meter. The only thing I can really pick on with this design was the addition of LEDs. While cool to look at, when the laptop cooler is doing what it is intended to do, all real views of the LED lighting are blocked, and really isn't needed. That being the only gripe, I still found myself liking this cooler and what it offers in features and functionality.
To be honest, there are plenty of $30 to $40 offerings out there that may look great, may have fancy trim and an uber-display of LED lighting, but the real question is: will they do their intended job? In most instances, this can be answered with a simple, maybe. While they do have a fan and they may or may not have extra features, offering only a degree or two of cooling to our system is just not worth it. When you can take a cooler that reduces our furnace four to five degrees, for much newer systems, the results can only get better.
Considering that they are currently selling at $43.12 may sound a tad pricey, but consider that it actually works, and looks good with plenty of features to satisfy anyone in need of some notebook cooling. If it were me putting my money on the counter, the Massive 14 Squared is in my top three notebook coolers that I have had the pleasure to test.
PRICING: You can find products similar to this one for sale below.
United States: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon.com
United Kingdom: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon.co.uk
Australia: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon.com.au
Canada: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon.ca
Deutschland: Finde andere Technik- und Computerprodukte wie dieses auf Amazon.de