I'm going to build my first computer tomorrow and was wondering about getting uniform coverage of thermal paste between the CPU and the Hyper 212 cooler fan base. I know there is a lot of conflicting opinions on how to apply the paste. I found this article which was applicable to my situation.
It says applying the paste in short lines along the spacers between the pipes is the best way. (has photos). In the comment section someone asked about the Cooler Master Hyper 212 plus, which is the CPU cooler that I'm installing. The response was since the Hyper 212 has four pipes, three short lines of thermal paste should be used.
So I'm thinking--would it be a good idea to try this method, mount the cooler, tighten it down, then remove the cooler and inspect for uniform spread of the thermal paste? Then clean everything up and reapply paste, making adjustments if needed? Or am I overanalyzing this?
Overanalyzing. You can just use your finger/q-tip or anything to spread the paste around carefully, attach it, check your temperatures and forget about it. If you use your hand, make sure its clean so oils don't get on it. You can use gloves also if you want.
Do people not read instructions these days? JK I know apply a small amount to the CPU is not what you need in a installation guide.
Like Stig said add some between the heat pipes. Use a old credit card or a razor blade or anything with a thin straight edge to flatten it out and work it into the grooves. Make sure it is a very very thin layer.
After you have prepped your heatsink apply a small amount (pea sized) to your CPU and install.
If you remove the cooler ensure you clean and reapply the thermal paste, it is not reusable.
See what I mean? Five answers, five different methods! LOL.
HostileDonut's method of checking the spread pattern of the paste is what I had in mind, but shouldn't all surfaces be completely cleaned off and reapply paste? I would think Donut's method would introduce air bubbles, a definite
FWIW, I think Stig and crx88ia's method would give the best coverage. My question is: if I try this should I pull the cooler off and check for good spread pattern, then clean off paste and reapply, duplicating the technique?
How would that make air bubbles? You wipe your old paste, put on the new, and it should work just fine. Nothing else to it. The cooler will squish out all the air and spread the paste nice and even.
I misinterpreted your first post in this thread. I thought you meant to look at the spread pattern and then reinstall the CPU fan without wiping off the old stuff. I figured that would introduce air bubbles. Thanks for clarifying.
I think I'm going to install paste/cooler, remove cooler, inspect pattern, wipe paste clean, reinstall.