You would think with a few desk, a large photo area, and a full sized workbench I would have room to work on things around the office. The truth is though that the workbench fills up with projects quickly and everything else overflows into the photo area because of the space it provides. That isn’t a problem in itself, but the damage I have done to our past photo backdrops when everything was white was an issue. With the new wooden setup the idea was that dings, scratches, and scuffs wouldn’t be as big of a concern and for the most part they haven’t been. But I want to take good care of the space when getting into big projects. I’ve been looking for a mat to work on for a while and it just so happens that Alphacool has one that was perfect both for protection but also with nice information on the surface to help with projects. Today let's take a quick look and see if it ended up doing what I needed it to do.
Product Name: Alphacool Eisplateau Anti-Static Mat
Review Sample provided by: Alphacool
Written by: Wes
Pictures by: Wes
Amazon Affiliate Link: HERE
1200 x 600 x 4mm
rubber, printed textile
1x cable with an anti-static wrist strap
1x cable with an alligator clip
Packaging and Photos
The Eisplateau mat is large so it wasn’t a surprise when the box came in and was large as well. The front of the box has a photo of the mat at an angle across it with the name up in the top left corner and the Alphacool logo in the bottom left corner. Around on one of the sides they also have a full layout showing what is printed on the mat as well as the dimensions as well to help anyone who may come across the mat in a retail store.
Inside things are simple. You get the mat and it comes wrapped up in plastic. Then you get a small bag with an antistatic wrist strap with a cable on it and another cable with an alligator clip.
The Eisplateau is large enough that it was hard to get everything in one photo. As you can see it also does a good job of covering most of our photo area, leaving room for work. It is 1200mm by 600mm or in Imperial that is just over 47 inches wide by almost 24 inches tall. It has a mat finish just like a standard soft mouse pad and as you can see across the top they have printed a whole bunch of things on it but I will take a look at those individually. I do love the standard and metric measuring tape across the bottom, that should come in handy all of the time.
The bright blue fan on the left side of the Eisplateau is sure to catch everyone’s eye. The fan itself has the bolt holes for every fan size up to 180mm. If you are unsure of the fan size you can sit a fan over top and double check it. This one also has the two fan header photos in the corner along with pinouts and color codes.
Above the fan area in the top left corner is a power supply connector pinout. This has each connector type from two angles and color and pin codes for each. If you have ever sleeved a cable before having this close by is handy or even just to help if you need to pull power for anything in a case mod.
In the middle up top is a vandal switch wiring guide. They have layouts for both of the popular switch sizes and in normally open and normally closed configurations.
The tubing size chart is right in the middle. It has the dimensions and photos of both soft and hard tubes. On the hard tube side there aren’t as many diagrams and there seem to be some missing. Even Alphacools own 13mm ID tubes aren’t on here but they do cover the general sizes. The idea though is to be able to sit any tube down here and be able to make sure you have the right size. I know I have a few extra tubes from past builds that I would have to use this on to make sure it is the correct size. The compression fitting listing is also on this same line, they have the ID and OD of each fitting type, if you have a fitting without a box you can sit it here and figure out what size it is.
The radiator guide takes up a bunch of room due to their size. Honestly, the fan guide would do the same job for the most part. It's in the details here that I like though, they have the sizing for fan screws, something I always have to look up. The wrong length can puncture your radiator if they are too long or not work at all if they are too short.
Down along the bottom the Eisplateau has a cool water pump guide. They have each of the water pumps that they sell laid out here with the mounting points all color coded.
So I will be the first to admit that I don’t practice the best static protection practices. I’ve basically done everything that people say you shouldn’t. I’ve build PCs on the carpet, I’ve had motherboards laying on blankets, I even have put video cards and motherboard on top of the static protective bags. Well with this mat I can attempt to be a little better by using the built in anti-static straps. The straps hook to you and clip to your PC. This prevents static from building up while you shuffle your feet around. Honestly static protection in components is a lot better these days but it is nice to have the option to be safe.
The straps clip to these buttons. They are just like a jean snap connection only larger. They attach to the mat with four mounts and there is a pair of the connections up in the top middle and down at the bottom right corner. My only concern with the top middle one is if I lay a PC down that they might be under the computer and scratch things up.
So what is the story with the mat itself? Well like I said this is basically just a huge mouse pad. So it has a cloth top then foam rubber padding and a grippy bottom. The padding for me is the most important part. My wood table surface has proven itself to be easy to dent and ding so I’m hoping that working with this mat will both protect what I’m working on as well as the table itself, even if I drop things.
Testing the Eisplateau wasn’t complicated or even time consuming really. I kept it out and waited for a chance to get to work on a build. That didn’t take long to happen, last week I was putting together a small ITX build in a Phantaks case and took that as a chance to see how the pad would do. Remember the original goal was to protect the photo area. Well almost immediately I dropped a small SFX power supply, something that would have caused a ding in the wood and the padding of the pad took the hit without any damage to the table. More importantly, I didn’t have to work with kid gloves on the whole time. I could slide the case around without worrying that the feet would put rubber marks on the table and I could lay expensive components down without worrying about the static as well.
Now of all of the information printed on the top of the mat, it was the measurements down along the bottom that came in handy almost immediately when trying to figure out if the short cables from my SFX power supply would reach. For those that were wondering, they didn’t, but I a few random cable extensions did the job.
The large workspace had enough room for my build in the middle with components on one side and my camera on the other. A larger case might start to get a little crowded but would still be more than workable. I did run into trouble with the center mounted static strap buttons. I mentioned it when going over the details of the pad but with those mounted in the center, I was worried that when I layed a case down flat it would lay on those and potentially scratch things. Well even with the smaller cases I was working with I did have to work around them. I would actually be happy with just the corner mounted buttons or maybe buttons on both the left and right sides. It didn’t scratch anything because I was careful, but it is something you will most likely have to work around with this pad. Though most modders will be able to quickly remove the two buttons that are in the way if they are an issue often.
Overall and Final Verdict
So like I said, this wouldn’t be a long review or anything. I set out to find a solution to a problem I have been dealing with. That problem was me damaging and dirtying up my photo area when I end up working on computers on top of it. Alphacool had the perfect solution, a huge table sized soft pad to work on. The fact that it helps with static is really nice but was just a bonus in my eyes. Same with all of the great information they have printed on the top of it. The fan size information, tubing size diagrams, and wiring diagrams will all come in handy in the future. The measuring tape across the bottom will most likely be used the most. The only downside I ran into was the location of one of the two mounts for the included static straps. They are in the top center of the pad and may end up under what you are working on from time to time. I will most likely be carefully removing those two and just using the two mounted over on the right side. Beyond that, the price is a little high, but there aren’t many options available for a work surface like this. Sure you could use a large mouse pad, hell the Eisplateau is made of mouse pad material. But they are only normally wide, not deep. By the time you pick up two, you are at about the same price and that is without the static straps and clips or the printed top. Anyone like me who has to use an important surface for PC work should really consider one. You wouldn’t want to damage your kitchen table and have your spouse or parents come hunting you down.
Live Pricing: HERE