Can anyone tell me what is the best way to apply thermal compound to the CPU. I've seen a couple videos, some just put a pea sized amount in the center of CPU and apply the cooler unit on top and let it spread itself over the CPU. Another video where a person was spreading it out over the CPU with an applicator leaving about an eight of an inch to the edge left uncovered so the stuff doesn't get onto the pins I assume. Any thoughts?
I put a pea sized dot in the middle and then I tighten the heatsink on the CPU. Then I undo it and check for coverage. If the entire surface is not covered I then add more paste and re-tighten and re-check. When the entire surface is covered you know you have a thin layer that gives complete coverage when the heatsink is installed.