While attending CES 2007 the Legit Reviews staff came across the CoolIT USB Beverage Chiller at the CoolIT booth while looking for cool new hardware on the show floor. To make a long story short we ended up with one to try out and that is exactly what happened when we returned from CES. The USB Beverage Chiller solves the age old problem of how to keep your drink cold while you’re at your computer thanks to a peltier cooler that is built into the chiller. The USB beverage chiller simply plugs into the USB port on your desktop computer or laptop and in less than a minute you have a cold plate to sit your beverage of choice on. Pretty damn cool if you ask us, but does it work?
To try out the CoolIT USB Beverage Chiller we plugged it into the Dell M1710 Gaming Laptop and had it working in seconds. The chiller is powered by a five foot long USB cable and works on both USB 1.1 and 2.0 devices. The USB Chiller requires at least 1.2 Amps to operate and pulls about 5W of power, so some the original USB ports found on older systems might not have enough power for it to operate correctly. Most USB ports will provide sufficient amperage for the Chiller to operate and we couldn’t find one that didn’t.
When it came to chilling a warm can of soda the USB Beverage Chiller fell flat on its face, but that’s not what it’s supposed to do. The intended use of the USB Beverage Chiller is to keep a cold drink cold. We then opened two cans of soda and sure enough after 10-15 minutes the Pepsi that was on the chiller was without a doubt colder than the one on the coaster. When it came to plastic bottles the chiller didn’t work too well, but it seemed to chill glass bottles and containers well.
The CoolIT USB Beverage Chiller might be improved by having a better base as the cold plate is flat and the bottom of the soda can is not. Due to this, only a tiny amount of surface material from the soda can actually touches the cold plate. It would be interesting to see if they could make a cold plate that was molded the same shape as a can for increased contact.
Let’s take a look at what is inside the cooler!