Best thermal paste?

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The_Blood_Raven

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AS5 is good and is the most popular but the best is Arctic Cooling MX-2, it slightly (and I mean slightly) outperforms its competition and spreads real well. Also, unlike AS5 which has silver particles in it, MX-2 is totally non-conductive.
 

computernewbie

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i mean theres not much of a price difference, and if there is even the slightest performance boost, its still a step up, thanks. I cant believe people make it a big deal about the price of thermal paste, i mean its like 5-10$, whats the big deal? lol. Oh yes, i forgot to ask, whats the best way to apply thermal paste? I do believe its just sticking one drop in the middle and letting the cpu cooler naturally spread it out
 

pjmelect

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The very best thermal paste is home made paste with diamond powder mixed in with it. There was a post on this forum about it and there are web pages about it but I will leave it up to you to look it up.
 

computernewbie

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o.o diamond, must be expensive (thermal paste wise that is), how were the benchmarks for it? lol i just imagined a cpu and cpu cooler that were made out of diamond...
 
I use IC Diamond 7 Carat Thermal Compound:

http://www.innovationcooling.com/

Here's a link to the xbitlabs technical review and test results of just about every compound made:

http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/coolers/display/thermal-interface-roundup.html

Here's a link to one of the online vendors:

http://www.heatsinkfactory.com/ic-diamond-7-carat-thermal-compound-15-gram-p-16605.html

The compound works very well with my Thermalright Ultra 120 cpu heatsink.

To be fair there are other thermal compounds that are very good. For the typical user a temperature drop of a few degrees Centigrade won't make much of a difference. For a hardcore gamer into serious overclocking on a suicidal mission to save the planet from alien invaders it might make a difference.
 

computernewbie

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now it seems like IC diamond 7 carat is the best in the benchmarks...hmmm. Wonder if i should put thermal paste on my video card? Or is it too much for a newbie
 
I also used IC Diamond on the northbridge and southbridge chipsets of my motherboard. I haven't tried it on a gpu yet. If you look at the xbitlabs review you'll see IC Diamond didn't do as well on the gpu. Some of the other compounds did better.

EDIT - I just bought and XFX HD 4770 graphics card. It is a dual slot version that exhausts hot air out one of the rear panel slots. It's also an energy efficient card so I don't know if it would be worth the effort.
 

Yoosty

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Here is a very good Review on 80-way Thermal Interface Material Performance Test.
http://benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=150&Itemid=62

The Review is takes into consideration the Curing time of each Thermal Compound and post them. Here are two examples:

Arctic Silver 5 Polysynthetic Thermal Compound (4)
(4) Arctic Silver 5 Application Instructions (up to 200-hours recommended curing time.

Tuniq TX-3 (0)
(0) No Curing Time or Special Application Suggested.
 

jeffredo

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Very effective, cheap, easy to use and clean up.
 
G

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OCZ freeze extreme, non conductive, easy to use and does a fantastic job at that, no curing time and not very expensive, better than AS5 in my opinion in cooling (2-3 degrees cooler now with it) Just dont use any KAK that comes with any components in small plastic packets, it wont work well...
 

tmike

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Roughly equivalent to asking someone's religion :)

I'm currently on Shin-Etsu X23-7762. It lowered my temps slightly, but in fairness I didn't give the AS a full run-in before switching.
 

jsc

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I pretty much use Arctic Silver AS5 and Ceramique. Both times that was what the local Rat Shack had.

I have noticed little difference between the two. I also have not noticed a significant difference in temperatures before and after the AS5 cured.

Curing time - theoretically AS5 needs about 200 hours and several power on-off (heat-cool) cycles to cure, to set, to whatever to deliver optimum performance (maximum cooling).
 

uncfan_2563

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is it only AS5 that requires curing time? i think 200 hours is a bit much when your computer is in your room and you have to sleep there. it makes it very inconvinient.
 

werxen

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problems with AS5:

curing time
must be reapplied every few months for best cooling results
is conductive

i used to have temps of 33*C idle now im at 38*C after 6 months. :( i suppose you might have to do this with all thermal paste but i hear its especially crappy on AS5.

 
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