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Applying thermal paste

When applying thermal past should the paste cover the whole CPU or just around the middle? Many different things are being said. From this video it appears as if the X method is the best for applying the paste
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EyXLu1Ms-q4&feature=related

Is arctic silver 5 the best type of thermal past?
14 answers Last reply
More about applying thermal paste
  1. Arctic silver 5 is the most popular to use, though with a difference of 1 degree average from other products, it's negligable.
    The best method is putting a pea sized spot on the center of the cpu, then using a business card or something of the like to spread it around making sure the entire cpu heat shield is covered. Try not to use too much..
  2. TX2 or TX3 is the best, by tunique.

    You follow the directions on the package, not advice from some random person. All thermal pastes are different. Different consistencies, different ingredients, etc, therefore the proper way for one brand is not the proper way for another brand.

    IMO, a pea sized amount is waaaay too much, probably 3x too much. Especially for newer 32nm cpu's which are tiny.

    I like to spread it by putting some saran wrap around my finger and doing little circles all over the cpu without any hanging off the edge. If you use a pea sized amount, likely when you tighten the heatsink down it's going to squeeze out all over the place.
  3. I spread compound as thinly and evenly as possible over the entire surface using the edge of a credit card. The air bubbles in the video were from using WAY too much paste and not spreading it thinly & evenly. The other methods simply ignore significant amounts of surface area. The thermal path is ONLY through the paste. The manufacturers could save money by making their heat spreaders smaller if they thought they would cool as well. This is a no brainer IMHO.
  4. ^ Agreed!

    http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/274824-29-thermal-compound-roundup-2011

    The application of any thermal compound is important, even trial fitting removing and inspecting the contact footprint will allow you to see for yourself exactly whats happening.

    However you arrive at it, you want as thin a full contact layer as possible, you are only filling in the microscopic imperfections between the heat sink base and the CPUs heat spreader.

    Too much thermal compound insulates instead of conducting the heat, you want the best heat conduction you can get, for the lowest temperature results.
  5. Personally I put a pea sized amount in the middle on the chip, place the cooler on and move it about a little to spread the compound. No mess and good results.
  6. Me too. I do a dot about 5.0-5.5 mm's. Once I apply the thermal paste I clamp down the heatsink letting the pressure from the clamping and heatsink spread the thermal paste.
  7. As someone said you'll probably get a million different answers on this. If you go with Artic Silver go onto their website and look up your CPU. It will give you directions on the best way to apply Artic Silver for your model CPU.
  8. Anyone else think it was funny the guy said to listen to the directions from the package, not some random person, then starts to say his way of doing it?
    I dunno...maybe I just see humor in inappropriate things.
  9. stingstang said:
    Anyone else think it was funny the guy said to listen to the directions from the package, not some random person, then starts to say his way of doing it?
    I dunno...maybe I just see humor in inappropriate things.


    Huh what are you talking about.
  10. Geekapproved said, "You follow the directions on the package, not advice from some random person. All thermal pastes are different. Different consistencies, different ingredients, etc, therefore the proper way for one brand is not the proper way for another brand."

    Then said,"I like to spread it by putting some saran wrap around my finger and doing little circles all over the cpu without any hanging off the edge. If you use a pea sized amount, likely when you tighten the heatsink down it's going to squeeze out all over the place."
  11. stingstang said:
    Geekapproved said, "You follow the directions on the package, not advice from some random person. All thermal pastes are different. Different consistencies, different ingredients, etc, therefore the proper way for one brand is not the proper way for another brand."

    Then said,"I like to spread it by putting some saran wrap around my finger and doing little circles all over the cpu without any hanging off the edge. If you use a pea sized amount, likely when you tighten the heatsink down it's going to squeeze out all over the place."


    Yea I found the Saran wrap method very wierd...by spreading it like that the chances are there will be gaps of non coverage lol. I have never had paste come out the edge, even if it did paper towel would mop it up quick.
  12. This isn't rocket science, it doesn't matter how you apply it, what matters is the end result is the thinnest possible fully covering layer you can attain!
  13. This topic has been closed by Rubix_1011
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