Turning your notebook computer into a desktop replacement is commonplace these days. Who wants a large noisy tower anyway, when they can have a smaller quiet machine that they can also take with them when they travel. But once you start using a notebook as your main computer, you might start to notice little things that make you wish you had your desktop back. Things like viewing angle, a full size keyboard, etc. Of course you can prop the back of your notebook up on a thick phone book and hook up a separate keyboard to it, but that is so not the gadgeteer way! Enter the Xbrand 360° Height Adjustable Laptop Stand. This stand will not only keep your notebook in a perfect viewing angle, but will also keep it cool.
This stand is available with or without a built in powered USB 2.0 hub. I was sent the version with the hub which weighs in at 3.1lbs with a 11.8 x 11.0 x 4.8 x 8.5in footprint.
Included with this model is an AC wall wart and a 2ft long USB cable to connect from the stand to a USB port on your laptop.
Assembly is not required with this stand, you just pull it out of the box, plop it on your desk, set your notebook on the cooling cradle and then adjust to 1 of 4 available height settings.
The height is adjusted by pressing the long plastic bar on the front of the base, and then sliding the cooling cradle backwards or forwards a half inch or so. Releasing the bar will allow the cradle to click into place.
Here you see the stand in the lowest setting. You can also see the height adjust bar along the front of the base.
And here it is in the highest elevated setting.
This stand does keep your notebook cool by providing a curved out area that the bottom of the computer does not touch. This area allows air to flow freely beneath it.
To keep the laptop from sliding off the stand and into your lap while it is in the highest setting, a retainer bar is used. Depending on the design of your laptop, this bar may interfere with buttons, CD, floppy or other features. A slider switch allows you to fold the retainer down when needed. Just don’t forget to adjust the height of the stand to the lowest setting before you do so! Otherwise, you may find that your laptop has slid onto the floor or your lap.
This stand is called the 360 due to the 4 small rollers located on the bottom of the base. These rollers allow you to easily swivel the stand around to change the viewing angle or to access the rear connections.
The USB hub model gives you 4 2.0 ports. Two are located on the back of the stand.
An additional USB port is located on both the left and right sides of the stand. These locations are convenient for connecting keyboards, mice or USB flash drives.
During my review period, I found that the 360 Laptop Stand helped to give my notebook computer more of a desktop feel by raising the screen to a better viewing angle and providing an area where I could place a full sized keyboard for more comfortable typing. The addition of the 4 port USB hub helped out as I was able to do away with a separate hub.
As far as price, the price for the hub version does seem to be in line with other stands with similar features. The non hub version’s price seems a little too high in my opinion though…
Price: $99.99 (4 port USB hub version), $59.99 (no hub)
4 height settings
4 USB 2.0 ports built in
Non hub version is expensive