Motherboard and CPU's - Thermal Paste

I havent got a clue what thermal paste is apart from its like used to put the CPU in the mono or something.


Can someoen please explain:

1. What it is.
2. What its for.
3. Does it help.
4. Do I have to use it.
4 answers Last reply
More about motherboard thermal paste
  1. Hatman said:
    I havent got a clue what thermal paste is apart from its like used to put the CPU in the mono or something.


    Can someoen please explain:

    1. What it is.
    2. What its for.
    3. Does it help.
    4. Do I have to use it.


    If you purchase a new retail CPU, thermal paste is included with the purchase and is applied to the heatsink. If you purchase an OEM processor or are reinstalling your CPU or heatsink, you need to replace the thermal paste before installing the cpu and heatsink. Read your CPU or MB instructions or Google thermal paste for any further instruction/information.
  2. There are metalic kinds, Ceramic, and silicon I think it is.

    Some advise Ceramic as it has little chance of shorting out your mohterboard should some find its way there. It's used to level out the connections from the back of the processor to the heatsink plate so its a perfect fit with no grooves so it maximizes the heat transfer so the heatsink can do its job.

    I went with Arctic Silver Ceramique Thermal Compound - $4.99 US
  3. 1. Already explained.
    2. Thermal paste is used to fill in the gaps between the CPU IHS/core and the base of the HS. Because these surfaces may not be completely flat, the bare contact between a core/IHS with the HS base will cause increased core temps because the "rough" surfaces will trap in air. Since air is a poor insulator, heat will not travel very quickly from the core/IHS to the HS, and thus overheating may result.
    3. Yes it helps
    4. Thermal paste is almost a necessity; however, you do not have to use it. You will, however, probably decrease the lifespan of that specific component. Unless you can lap the surfaces that will come in contact with each other to near perfection, I highly recommend using thermal paste.
  4. if you lap with 2000grit and use a micrometer for level on both surfaces you don't have to use the paste, but i don't think you are that dedicated or have a micrometer. Just a bit of information, if you do do this, you get the equivalent performance of the shin etsu x23 thermal paste, which is basically the best stuff.
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