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Thread: recomendation for thermal compound

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    Senior Member outwar6010's Avatar
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    recomendation for thermal compound

    Can anyone recommend the best stuff possible? Also how long does the stuff last? I bought a tube of artic silver (I think) like 3 years ago and there's still some left in the tube would it still be good to use?

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    Re: recomendation for thermal compound

    If it's not dried out then it's fine.

    Generic silicone or ceramic thermal grease has always been my recommendation. Cheap as chips at your local eletronic store, non-conductive.

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    Re: recomendation for thermal compound

    Thanks. It seems to still be runny.

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    Re: recomendation for thermal compound

    Just make sure it hasn't separated into the carrier and solid content.

    I think there is a lot of hype with thermal compounds. The best thermal transfer is undoubtedly metal to metal contact between smooth flat surfaces, thermal compound will always have a higher thermal resistance than metal, it's only function is to fill the tiny voids between the mating surfaces as it has a lower thermal resistance than the air in those voids.

    For best performance lap and polish the two surfaces, but then the skill comes in getting both surfaces flat so there aren't big voids in between the two surfaces.
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    Re: recomendation for thermal compound

    As highlighted by Peterb it's to fill the tiny voids, therefore don't do a thick layer of TIM.

    Then you have the spot or spread method debate, I have always spread a small dot, creating a thin layer and whenever removed a heatsink find there was no excess spread out.

    Useful reading on the spot method.

    Some data in this post regarding differing TIM's usage results.

    Another one I've seen mentioned is the one with diamond particles but can cause pitting between surfaces. Some swear by it others avoid it.
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    Re: recomendation for thermal compound

    TBH, I'd ditch the Arctic Silver.
    If that's all you have, if you have a BIG tube rather than a tiny syringe and if it's still in good condition, then fair enough, but IMO it's a bit old and crappy compared to what's on the market these days.

    I used some when I first went watercooled a couple of weeks ago and was getting pretty OK temperatures on a de-lidded CPU with Liquid Pro professionally applied...
    But a friend (and fairly accomplished overclocker, who is my main go-to for serious tech advice) came by to see my w/c efforts and heard what I'd pasted, whereupon he insisted I repaste with some of his Thermal Grizzly...

    I used the spread method on both AS and TG and I'm now running 14ºC cooler just from the different paste.
    Thermal Grizzly is pretty good, but can be somewhat awkward to apply if you've never used it before.

    If it were me, I'd go with MX4 or MX2 as it's decent enough but still very easy to work with.

    Whether a few degrees is worth it to you or not is your call.
    I've (still) yet to run my full range of usual benchmarks to ascertain exactly what improvements I have in my temperatures, but so far the choice of TIM does seem to help quite a bit.

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    Re: recomendation for thermal compound

    That's a huge difference, which Thermal Grizzly did you use?

    Link:- Official product page



    Link:- Test method

    MX4 fairs better than AS5 but even TG Hydronaut & Kryonaut aren't that huge a delta difference.

    I can't recall how old the tube of AS5 I have is, if guessing I'd say at least 5yrs plus. Even when recently did a build for myself with an i5 4690K it looked and spread just like I recall the first time I'd ever used it. In the time I've owned tube it has been used for a few builds plus reapplications.

    From few discussions with members on forums I'd say I get similar temps to others for my OC, of course it isn't as accurate a comparative as it should be.
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    Re: recomendation for thermal compound

    Quote Originally Posted by gupsterg View Post
    That's a huge difference, which Thermal Grizzly did you use?
    "Thermal Grizzly Hydronaut High Performance Thermal Paste", apparently...

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    Re: recomendation for thermal compound

    Cheers! may get a Thermal Grizzly TIM when next shopping for bits, just to see if my tube of AS5 is not at it's most optimal.

    I was wondering if you can expand on TG is awkward to apply?
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    Re: recomendation for thermal compound

    Quote Originally Posted by gupsterg View Post
    I was wondering if you can expand on TG is awkward to apply?
    I've thus far favoured MX2 & 4, having previously been an Arctic Silver user.
    Compared to both of these, I found Thermal Grizzly quite thick and sticky-viscous, difficult to spread and even more so if you use the applicator tip it comes with.

    I usually just put a squeeze on and, with a latex-gloved finger, spread my TIM equally across the required surface. Grizzly was quite hard to spread cleanly and seemed to 'dry' or 'set' quite quickly. It took me a few goes before I was able to paste it on in clean, even stripes with a consistently thick coating.

    Certainly does the job, but again I'd personally just stick with the MX if it were me. About as good and easier to work with.

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    Re: recomendation for thermal compound

    Cheers!

    I was tempted to go MX4 at one point, it may have been when changing a cooler on GPU.

    On the AS5 product page it states has a slightly capacitance property but not electrically conductive, I think it was due to reading this.

    Amazed to see 8yr life for application on MX4 page.

    I've read posts where people state to reapply AS5 yearly or so, but I've never done it to a time regime. When I have ever reapplied not seen any difference in temps.

    Noted the applicator tip with TG, not something I'd use, I usually use a top up card (cut to a size I find right).
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    Re: recomendation for thermal compound

    Any cheapo paste will do unless you are a serious overclocker.

    If it's good enough for a 20k server with 5 years warrenty, it's good enough to owt.

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    Re: recomendation for thermal compound

    Any recommendation on which cheapo one to get?

    Only my way of thinking but say you pay £1 for a tube vs £5 for MX4/AS5 not a great outlay? especially taking into account what price a total rig costs.
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    Re: recomendation for thermal compound

    Quote Originally Posted by abaxas View Post
    Any cheapo paste will do unless you are a serious overclocker.
    I hang out with some serious overclockers - Unless you use the best stuff (which they're usually quite generous with, anyway), they will take the mickey mercilessly!!

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    Re: recomendation for thermal compound

    Quote Originally Posted by Ttaskmaster View Post
    I hang out with some serious overclockers - Unless you use the best stuff (which they're usually quite generous with, anyway), they will take the mickey mercilessly!!
    You could just make up a name for it.

    Sorry but I only use diglyceride germanium ball compound applied with a brush made from hamster pubes.

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    Re: recomendation for thermal compound

    Quote Originally Posted by abaxas View Post
    You could just make up a name for it.
    I tried 'Cesiumfrancolithicmyxialobidiumrixidixidoxidexidroxhide', but they already got the reference...!

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