The 10 Best Desk Fans

Updated June 02, 2017 by Sam Kraft

10 Best Desk Fans
Best High-End
Best Mid-Range
Best Inexpensive
We spent 40 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top choices for this wiki. When you need to keep cool in your home office or at the workplace, try one of these desk fans. They allow you to remain comfortable without running the air conditioner or annoying your colleagues with the noise of a full-sized fan. Plus, they sit unobtrusively on any tabletop or easily attach to a desk, so you won't have to stress over where to put it. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best desk fan on Amazon.

10. Thermaltake Mobile

A nifty portable solution for cooling down your laptop, the Thermaltake Mobile is very effective for its size. Quirkily designed to look like internal CPU fans, it can prolong the life of your hardware and provide you with a little breeze at the same time.
  • available in 2 sizes
  • has a retractable mini usb cord
  • does not have a power switch
Brand Thermaltake
Model AF0064
Weight 6.4 ounces
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

9. Avalon Table-Top

The Avalon Table-Top offers versatility whether you're at home or at the office. Both the desktop and clip-on options are easy to use, while its adjustable neck can rotate in all directions to keep you calm and cool however the fan is set up.
  • does not shake or rattle
  • very sturdy grip clamp
  • only has 2 fan speeds
Brand Avalon
Weight 2 pounds
Rating 3.6 / 5.0

8. Vornado Zippi

When space is limited, the Vornado Zippi is a useful model to have around. Its innovative design comes in a variety of vibrant colors, and it conveniently folds up into an even more compact size for easy travel or storage when not in use.
  • comes with a 3-year warranty
  • soft cloth blades are safe to touch
  • rather loud while in operation
Brand Vornado
Model FA1-0007-39
Weight 1.9 pounds
Rating 4.3 / 5.0

7. Rowenta Turbo

When you want power without excessive noise, count on the Rowenta Turbo. It features five strong blades that help produce an ultra-quiet operation so you won't interfere with anyone who happens to be watching TV, listening to music or sleeping.
  • integrated handle for easy carrying
  • removable front grid for cleaning
  • can be tough to assemble
Brand Rowenta
Model 1830005456
Weight 10.5 pounds
Rating 3.5 / 5.0

6. Opolar F401

Stay cool while on a budget with the miniature Opolar F401. Conveniently powered by a USB cable that’s just less than four feet long, it’s suitable for the office, home, or even the car. The single cable means you won't have a power cord dangling off the desk, either.
  • made of resilient metal
  • 6-inch frame takes up little space
  • unassuming minimalist design
Model F401
Weight 13.6 ounces
Rating 4.9 / 5.0

5. Honeywell TurboForce

With two colors and two sizes to choose from, the Honeywell TurboForce allows you to tailor your selection to whatever space you’ll be using it in. Its head pivots 90 degrees for changing the angle of the airflow, which is pretty powerful for the fan’s compact size.
  • robust 7-inch blade
  • can be wall mounted
  • solid base distributes weight evenly
Brand Honeywell
Model HT-900
Weight 3.2 pounds
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

4. Dizaul Mini

Available in four bright colors, the Dizaul Mini is compatible with any mobile device that’s built with a USB port. It gives you three refreshing speeds to choose from and will work for up to 6.5 hours after it’s been fully charged.
  • bright led light on one side
  • battery is easy to replace
  • ergonomic palm-sized design
Brand dizauL
Model pending
Weight 7.8 ounces
Rating 5.0 / 5.0

3. Camtop Personal

A reliably long life, a super-quiet motor and a sleek build help make the Camtop Personal a quality option in nearly all facets. The pedestal base is quite stable, and its black and red color combination will spice up an otherwise boring office space.
  • made of durable lightweight plastic
  • head angle adjusts 360 degrees
  • includes 4 anti-vibration pads
Weight 12.8 ounces
Rating 4.7 / 5.0

2. Ozeri Brezza III

The Ozeri Brezza III raises the bar in performance and technology, featuring automatic dual oscillating motors with both vertical and horizontal motion to maximize airflow. Plus, its extended range remote makes it easy to control.
  • stylish aerodynamic design
  • multiple speed levels to choose from
  • arrives fully assembled
Brand Ozeri
Model OZF6
Weight 8 pounds
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

1. Dyson Multiplier

Stylish, powerful and modern, the premium Dyson Multiplier utilizes an innovative bladeless design that creates a smooth stream of air. It features an adjustable oscillating head that directs the air precisely where you need it.
  • sleep timer with preset intervals
  • magnetized remote stores on the fan
  • no-grill design is easy to clean
Brand Dyson
Model 300875-01
Weight 7.2 pounds
Rating 4.7 / 5.0

Making Comfort A Breeze

Depending on a person's working environment, not many things can instantly improve its quality when it gets super hot. Regardless of whether you work at home or in the office, the right kind of breeze with refreshingly cool air from a powerful desk fan can greatly improve your work ethic and energy level.

A fan is an air circulation machine that is designed to produce flow or movement of a gas using a rotating assembly (or hub) of vanes or blades. This hub is often referred to as an impeller or rotor. The blades are usually housed in a durable casing to prevent injury or other objects from coming into contact with them. The majority of desk fans available are powered by electric motors and work by evaporative cooling. The desk fan itself is usually small in size, portable, and equipped with a swiveling head that allows it to oscillate across a wide space to keep the user cool.

Desk fans fall into two categories, battery-powered and mains-powered. Battery-powered fans clip onto the edge of an office desk and run on a single power setting, while mains-powered fans stand upright and have multiple speed settings. Although battery-powered units are more portable and less expensive than mains-powered desk fans, they are a temporary solution. Mains-powered fans are more powerful, more effective, they last longer, and they are considered a permanent solution for keeping cool.

The majority of desk fans available are categorized as axial-flow fans, which move air in a direction parallel to the shaft around which their blades are rotating. An axial-flow desk fan has several operating components, including a fan blade, base, armature, motor, blade guard, motor housing, oscillator gearbox, and an oscillator shaft. A ceiling fan's motor moves in a counter-clockwise direction (as do its blades) while its armature remains stationary.

By contrast, a desk fan's electric motor is always stationary, giving the armature a push in order to provide motion to its attached blades. The blades then spin in a clockwise direction due to Newton's third law of motion. The armature shaft extends from both sides of a fan's motor with one end of the shaft attached to the blade, while the other end is attached to the oscillator gearbox.

The motor case is connected to the gearbox in order to contain both the rotor and stator (the stationary part of the fan's rotary system). The oscillator allows the fan's head to move from side to side when the unit is turned on. The oscillator shaft is connected to both the base and the gearbox. The motor housing protects the oscillator mechanism, while the blade guard joins to the motor housing for extra safety.

Desk fans are most popular for use in office settings and schools among other places. This is primarily due to their compact design and ability to be transported and placed almost anywhere. Some desk fans are stationary, meaning that they don't turn, while others are capable of oscillation in situations where a desk or table may require a wider range of cooling. Desk fans are usually made from lightweight plastic and are equipped with long power cords, making them easy to place on a flat surface above a nearby outlet without running out of slack.

Whatever Direction The Wind Is Blowing

One thing to keep in mind about desk fans is that they aren't uniform in shape like larger fans designed to sit in a particular location. They come in a variety of different shapes, sizes, and colors, which means that one does not have to sacrifice style for functionality.

If you're into modernity and cutting-edge technology, for example, desk fans come in bladeless designs that are safe and relatively easy to clean. Additionally, a desk fan powered by a universal serial bus (USB) interface can plug right into your computer, which comes in handy when space is an issue and you don't want to be dealing with a lot of bulky cords. Some of the most modern desk fans also feature intuitive digital touch controls with remotes that can be used from across the room to change their settings.

The fan one invests in should be relatively quiet, regardless of whether its design is bladeless or not. It should also be easy to move, adjust, with several available speed settings, and have the ability to oscillate back and forth to move large amounts of air.

Finally, one must ensure the fan chosen has some type of overload protection built into its design. This can help to prevent short circuits and potential fires. In situations where you may be sharing a room with children or pets, some fans even have flexible or soft cloth blades that are safe to touch when the unit is running.

A Brief History Of Desk Fans

Some of the earliest fans date back to around 3,000 BCE during the time of the ancient Greeks and Romans who used them to keep cool as well as for both religious and ceremonial purposes. These early fans were made from materials that included feathers, paper, jewels and wood, with the more elaborately-decorated fans being large and used to indicate wealth and power.

The first hand-held fans are thought to have originated in China as early as the second century BCE and were constructed from woven bamboo. Fast forward to the seventeenth century and fans from China were being exported in large quantities to Europe, where they essentially became a part of the costume for European women. These fans were adapted and specially decorated to suit the particular style of the time. This period of time also saw the rise in popularity of the Indian punkah fan.

Between 1882 and 1886, New Orleans resident Schuyler Skaats Wheeler invented the first fan powered by electricity. It was a desktop, two-bladed unit that was marketed by the Crocker and Curtis Electric Motor Company. By 1909, mass-produced electric fans for home use began to appear on the market, followed by industrial advances with steel that allowed fans to be designed in a variety of different shapes at affordable prices. By the 1950s, desk fans were being produced in many different styles and colors, which is a manufacturing trend that still continues today.

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Last updated on June 02, 2017 by Sam Kraft

Sam is a marketing/communications professional and freelance writer who resides in Chicago, IL and is perpetually celebrating the Cubs’ 2016 World Series victory.

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