Portability is one of the greatest advantages notebooks have over their desk-bound counterparts. And for notebook owners, there's nothing like putting their notebooks on their laps and using them while seated in front of the TV. However, one of the common problems associated with such an activity is heat. Most notebooks do heat up, in some cases pretty badly, making it impossible or at least uncomfortable to use on laps. In fact, most notebooks carry a disclaimer saying that the notebook gets hot during operation and to avoid physical contact.
Fortunately, Logitech has a solution and it's called the N700 Lapdesk. It's a lap desk with a cooling fan and integrated speakers. Let's see if it can alleviate the situation.
The Logitech N700 Lapdesk is a rather sizable lap desk and is able to accomodate notebooks of up to 16 inches. The large size means that it's stable when placed on your lap, so you don't have to worry about it sliding off. It is also angled at 10 degrees, making it more comfortable to use your notebook when seated. At the bottom of the N700 Lapdesk are two foldable holders that help prevent the laptop from sliding down should you shuffle about in your seat.
Additionally, the bottom of the N700 Lapdesk has been padded with a special air-mesh fabric that breathes and which shields your body from the heat. It does the heat shield task rather well and it certainly feels comfortable - we could barely feel the weight of the notebook!
To keep things cool, the N700 Lapdesk also has a built-in USB-powered fan that blows cool air onto your notebook. There's no speed control to vary the intensity of the fan, but it does the job well enough. It is also extremely quiet, so you don't have to worry about any annoying buzzing and whirring noises.
But perhaps what's most unique about the N700 Lapdesk is its integrated speakers. This is the first lap desk we've seen that comes with integrated speakers, and these speakers, like the fan, are also powered via USB. The speakers are a much welcome addition, considering the pathetic state of most notebook speakers. It's not the most powerful or ground-shaking pair of speakers we've heard, but audio performance is decent enough, although it does sound lightweight.
Overall, the N700 Lapdesk is a neat product that does what it is meant to do. Our only gripe is that Logitech should have provided an extra USB port by the way of a Y-connector, or given the N700's size, provided a USB hub. Most notebooks have an average of two USB ports, and with one most likely already taken up by the mouse, it's hard to see how people are going to be able to use the N700 Lapdesk and do other things like sync their iPhones or access their external hard drives at the same time.