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USB Desktop Safety Fan
Date 12th December, 2002
Author sabretooth
Editor James "Agg" Rolfe
Vendor PC Range


Nuts and Bolts
In a carried-on (or stolen) tradition from my last review, I decided that I'd pull the fan apart where possible (short of ripping it into small, unnecessary pieces) and study it more closely. It's a pretty simple device, meaning that there isn't a whole lot to see. But let's take a look anyway...

Click to Enlarge
One screw comes out to reveal the motor.

Click to Enlarge
Pulling down the loom-type plastic reveals the two power wires and the flexible shaft.

Click to Enlarge
The old "hide the screws under the rubber feet" trick. The weights are clearly visible now.

Click to Enlarge
The USB plug.

Click to Enlarge
The fan in action.

Conclusions
Overall, the fan does exactly what it's advertised to do, and reasonably well too. It doesn't require a power point and pushes enough air to keep you cool if it's sitting next to your keyboard.

The noise is quite annoying, though - and I'm not sure that there's any way to quieten it. The noise produced is more of an internal vibration from the motor and seems inherent to its design. If you're not sure of the noise, I guess it'd be producing the same noise as in little toy model cars. At a noisy LAN this isn't going to be a problem, but in my room where there's a watercooled PC, it's quite annoying. The ceiling fan hanging from the roof above my PC also alters the pitch of the noise that the safety fan produces by blowing air onto it - which also became annoying.

Overall though, it's handy for LANs and if you want some cheap, easy and safe cooling, then the USB desktop safety fan is a good pick. While the noise is a annoying, if you go to LANs which are hot (like I used to) or your PC room gets quite warm, then the $17 pricetag for the fan is really hard to argue with. The picture on the box illustrates a further 3 colours to the blue I reviewed here. The fan is also available in red, green and black.

Pros:
  • Price
  • Weight
  • USB connection
Cons:
  • Noise
  • Feet could be larger
Thanks go to PC Range for providing the review unit. The USB Desktop Safety Fan retails for just $17.


All original content copyright James Rolfe.
All rights reserved. No reproduction allowed without written permission.
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