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Thread: Recommend me a Thermal Compound

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    Recommend me a Thermal Compound

    I have finally used up the last of my Arctic Silver 5 and frankly, I'm now sick of the stuff and thinking of trying something new.

    Any recommendations?

    I've heard good things about IC Diamond (I think? it was a while back) but scan stocks something called IC Essential, same thing? Scan seems to have a sale on them so preferable to get from there, but if they don't have the good stuff I will go elsewhere.

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    Senior Member kalniel's Avatar
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    Re: Recommend me a Thermal Compound

    Generic ceramic grease from your local electronics shop. Works really well, is non-conductive, and cheap.

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    Re: Recommend me a Thermal Compound

    IC Diamond can be good in certain situations but TBH I would not use. I got a tube for free and it has a clay-like consistency meaning it is very hard to spread and moreover has a tendency to scratch the IHS on your CPU. Intel and AMD seem to use Shin Etsu thermal pads on their stock coolers.

    I tend to use Noctua NTH1 which works well unless you are applying it to a naked die. MX2 and MX4 are quite decent for their price and the Gelid,Thermaltake and Phoyba ones are not too bad either although they are probably similar formulations. Zalman STG1 is a generic thermal grease which comes in a bottle with a brush and is easy to apply as you paint the grease on both surfaces. However,something like MX2 does appear to work better though.

    I would probably go for MX4 if you are looking for a good thermal compound which is priced reasonably.
    Last edited by CAT-THE-FIFTH; 10-01-2013 at 02:56 PM.


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    Re: Recommend me a Thermal Compound

    I like how the MX-4 looks so far especially for that price

    Looks like it performs slightly under the MX-3 according to benchmarks but spreads better

    Any idea on clean up? One of the main reasons I hate AS5!

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    Re: Recommend me a Thermal Compound

    How do you mean "you're sick of the stuff"? Not performing how you want it to?

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    Re: Recommend me a Thermal Compound

    Quote Originally Posted by Aftermath View Post
    How do you mean "you're sick of the stuff"? Not performing how you want it to?
    I hate cleaning it, and I've been using it since like 2006 or something. Its not that it is bad or anything, I just want a change and now that I am finally out, it seems like the best time to do so.

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    Re: Recommend me a Thermal Compound

    I've always used Acetone which I buy dirt cheap from Chemist and never had an issue and cleans AS5 off with ease

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    Re: Recommend me a Thermal Compound

    IPA is what i use for general cleaning, acetone for when its REALLY stuck on there.

    I use whatever is cheapest, for the 2 or 3 degrees difference it makes (if you're lucky), i dont see the point in spending any more.

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    Re: Recommend me a Thermal Compound

    Personally, definitely, MX series. I use MX-2 and you can wipe the stuff off easily with tissue and the chip looks like new. Easy to spread, non-conductive and thin is thin can be

    Xigmatek, Zalman STG and Coolermaster and generic I have all used, all thick and gloopy, like chewing gum (not that bad really )

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    Re: Recommend me a Thermal Compound

    I use cotton swabs and Isopropyl alcohol that I buy from a local chemist who sometimes gives me a raised eyebrow ^^'

    Sometimes takes me like 4-5 swabs to clean processors and heatsinks up, sometimes even more, and it still seems like its stained a little.

    Looks like the MX series is definitely the way to go, so I will give them a go 1 by 1, thanks

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    Re: Recommend me a Thermal Compound

    You should really use a lint free cloth to avoid leaving any fibres on the chip.

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    Re: Recommend me a Thermal Compound

    I use kitchen roll soaked with IPS or TIM clean.


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    Re: Recommend me a Thermal Compound

    Awesome. I was going to ask this same question some time soon as I have recently used the last of my arctic silver too and will need some more. But all the answers are here. Most useful
    I got some of their cleaning stuff when I bought it too and use that for cleaning. Pretty decent, but probably not worth the money lol (and it didn't get that horrible stuff off the Xbox!).

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    Re: Recommend me a Thermal Compound

    mx-4 all the way, cheap and rather good.

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    Re: Recommend me a Thermal Compound

    Take a look at Indigo Xtreme, it performs very well in several benchmarks, and is non-conductive.

    A bit pricy though, if I remember correctly.

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    Re: Recommend me a Thermal Compound

    Chilledpc have a good range and shiny hardware ate pretty cheap.

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