Company: Buka Della Festa

Price: $21.00-$39.00
(depending on model)
$32.00 as tested

Today’s lesson: if you’re ever in Italy and want to say “Lift the Apple up” just say ALZAmela (it’s trademarked so you’ll probably be charged for saying it on a per use basis). How do I know this? Simple, I am an iBook user seeking a bit more comfort. If you’re an iBook user and you park the thing on your lap occasionally you can sympathize because you know the iBook can get a little warm. If you’ve ever use your iBook while wearing shorts, you are probably familiar with the “stick’um factor.” The “stick’um factor” is the same feeling you get when peeling yourself off a cheap vinyl couch on a hot summer day. I can’t guarantee the following to be completely accurate, but here is my theory: The iBook heats up and you leg sweats under the hot areas, this leads to adhesion because of the surface tension of water, well that’s my guess anyway. I am anxiously awaiting a grant from Apple to fund a more comprehensive study.

If you have this same problem you may ask yourself what you do about the sweaty leg adhesion factor. You might try ALZAmela. It works very well but so does a folded bed sheet (fold the bed sheet at least four times). On the other hand ALZAmela actually looks fairly slick, compared to a bed-sheet with Spiderman emblazoned in a repeating pattern its positively top notch. There’s nice plastic work (the future is in plastic my son) and some really nice engraving. I think lasers are involved in the process at some point, and if it has lasers it’s gotta’ be high quality! I wanted to include a picture or perhaps a small QuickTime movie of the ALZAmela but the model I have is clear Plexiglas. Couple that with my sub par digital camera, DV recorder and none of the pictures I took would have shown you much except whatever was under the ALZAmela. The point with the sloping iBook is to be clear so ALZAmela succeeded (I told you the quality was nice).

In all honesty the iBook doesn’t get that hot. It never reaches the stage where it becomes intolerable. I hear the TiBooks actually get so hot you’d pull them off your lap and stop computing for relief. I, not having the requisite scratch to purchase one of the titanium-skinned beauties, have no idea about the veracity of said reports. I do know my wife’s corporate issued Dell gets mighty hot, uncomfortably hot, just short of blister raising hot. So my wife nabbed my review piece and stuck it under her computer. She now computes comfortably thanks to ALZAmela (I hope they don’t ask me to send it back).

The good stuff out of the way I do have a few suggestions. The ALZAmela doesn’t latch on to the iBook so you have to carry it separately. I think it would have been supremely cool if it clicked onto the iBook and stayed attached as a semi permanent feature. It would also be a bit cooler if everything was angled to be flush with the computer, but that is a cosmetic complaint and in general the cosmetics are very good.

Bottom Line: All in all this product performs as promised for more than just the stated model (works with Dells too). Quality manufacturing, slick looks and a reasonable price makes the ALZAmela worth a look if you’re looking for a way to get that hot laptop off your legs. I recommend the sloped model for giving your laptop a more comfortable tilt.

MacMice Rating: 3 out of 5

Chris Seibold

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