Notebook computers are often hooked up to outboard keyboard, mouse and an external monitor. When its own display pressed into service as a second screen it’s wise to perche the laptop higher to avoid strain.

The Rain Design mStand here also proffers the laptop’s own keyboard and trackpad by tilting the whole notebook gently down towards you.

In the case of recent MacBooks with generous multi-touch trackpads, it encourages you to reach out and touch with OS X gestures such as three- and four-finger swipes.

Unashamedly Apple-inspired, the mStand is a solid aluminium U-shaped stand following the Apple Cinema Display foot, and that of recent iMacs.

It’s a solid frame of folded metal, weighing nearly 1.4kg, a uniform 4mm thick. That’s only half the thickness of the iMac pillar, although the mStand has a lot less mass to support. And the 4mm gauge does look right.

An upturned lip at the front prevents sliding – that, and four small rubber pads on the top surface. These are 2mm thick, and by preventing metal-to-metal contact, would hinder any heatsinking potential. However the inclined tilt could aid convection cooling from below.

A new feature over the original is the swivel stand. This is a lazy-susan affair, a round plate on the bottom with eight steel balls serving as a stable bearing.

It works perfectly, with no apparent wobble, enabling the whole laptop to be easily rotated on demand. Handy to share what’s on-screen with colleagues.

Build quality is first class, notwithstanding some wrinkling in the metalwork around the large cable-tidy cutout at the rear.