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  1. #1
    The Lightbringer Seezer's Avatar
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    Thermal Paste application

    I have read and looked at so many videos on this subject, and so many people say different things. I'm using an i5 3570k with a Thermaltake Frio. I looked on Arcticsilvers website and they say for my cpu that you should use the line method. A thin line running vertical down the cpu. But it doesn't say if you should spread this out, or let the cooler spread it.

    Another thing, I see some people covering the entire surface, and others using a pea sized drop in the middle and letting the heatsink spread it. What is the best way to do this?
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  2. #2
    For what its worth, I have always done the spread in thin layer over the whole CPU method, and I have never had a heating problem in my own PC´s (built 6 or 7 of my own), or PC´s I built at work

  3. #3
    The Lightbringer CheezusCrust's Avatar
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    The fine gents at Tek Syndicate did a video on this, also demonstrated how the thermal paste will spread using the different methods.


    _

  4. #4
    I am Murloc! Xuvial's Avatar
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    Pretty much how the videos explain it - never, ever spread it on your own, either apply a line or a dot and the mounting pressure of the heatsink will spread it out.

    Both line and pea are effective, it's really up to you. Keep in mind that the thicker the paste the more you'll need to apply, but in the end you don't need any more than a tiny bit.

    The images below is about the MOST you should apply if using pea method:



    Last edited by Xuvial; 2012-11-23 at 06:56 AM.

  5. #5
    I used the 'pea' method and haven't had any problems with my cpu
    I haven't overclocked it a ton though, 2500k OC to 4Ghz, with a cooler master 212 my high temp on a core is 43C. I've had it OC'd a bit higher as well and not much of a difference

  6. #6
    I generally use the Pea method myself though I've heard the method used really depends on the type of heatsink being used. My Hyper 212+ would probably be more efficient(within 1-2 degrees) if I used a line method since the contact surface seems to have some minor ridges around the "pipes" and the line method(applying it to the HSF before attaching it to the CPU) would potentially maximize the contact area between the three components but the Pea method has worked fine with it so far.

  7. #7
    The problem is that if you ask 10 "experts", you will get multiple answers of "how to do it". As I said, I spread it myself, and I have never had a problem with my own rigs, nor have I ever had a complaint about machines I built/changed CPU at work

    You just need to pick a method and just do that. Pick the method you feel best about, and just never use TOO much paste as that will negate the cooling effect - I think everyone can at least agree on that much

    EDIT: Also, you might want to do the method suggested by the makers of the paste...not all kinds spreads the same regardless of the method you use (pea/spread/line/cross/whatever)
    Last edited by Lilbruz; 2012-11-23 at 03:33 PM.

  8. #8
    Avoid using Artic silver 5, it's horrible. Noctua nt-h1 is just the easiest to apply and the best..

    For heatsinks I rather use the pea method because I can flip the heatsink 30° around to spread it. For waterblocks I prefer the line method. Spreading is bad because you can cause airbubbles in the paste before applying the heatsink.

    If you don't want to risk that much or look further, why don't you buy thermal pads instead of tubes?

  9. #9

  10. #10
    The Lightbringer Seezer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Faithh View Post
    Avoid using Artic silver 5, it's horrible. Noctua nt-h1 is just the easiest to apply and the best..

    For heatsinks I rather use the pea method because I can flip the heatsink 30° around to spread it. For waterblocks I prefer the line method. Spreading is bad because you can cause airbubbles in the paste before applying the heatsink.

    If you don't want to risk that much or look further, why don't you buy thermal pads instead of tubes?
    I didn't even know thermal pads existed.
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  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Seezer View Post
    I didn't even know thermal pads existed.
    They're pretty crappy and are generally used for low cost stuffs like laptops or stock coolers. They're pretty thick and pretty terrible. I don't recommend using them.

    You can reapply thermal paste as many times as you want. They're pretty easy to clean off with isopropyl alcohol (aka rubbing alcohol). If you're really worried, 1) apply the paste once 2) remove and check 3) clean 4) reapply.

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by yurano View Post
    They're pretty crappy and are generally used for low cost stuffs like laptops or stock coolers. They're pretty thick and pretty terrible. I don't recommend using them.

    You can reapply thermal paste as many times as you want. They're pretty easy to clean off with isopropyl alcohol (aka rubbing alcohol). If you're really worried, 1) apply the paste once 2) remove and check 3) clean 4) reapply.
    Crap? They're even better though. Look up for the indigo xtreme.

    The pre-applied thermal paste on the H100 is from Dow Corning which is high quality. That TIM gives me better temps than my noctua nt-h1 and AS5.

    AS5 is not fully non-conductive and requires more much experience to apply because it doesn't spread smoothy like any other non-conductive TIM like noctua's and is very annoying to clean.

  13. #13
    Pandaren Monk Klutzington's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Faithh View Post
    Avoid using Artic silver 5, it's horrible. Noctua nt-h1 is just the easiest to apply and the best..

    For heatsinks I rather use the pea method because I can flip the heatsink 30° around to spread it. For waterblocks I prefer the line method. Spreading is bad because you can cause airbubbles in the paste before applying the heatsink.

    If you don't want to risk that much or look further, why don't you buy thermal pads instead of tubes?
    How can you even say that. AS5 is great.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Klutzington View Post
    How can you even say that. AS5 is great.
    Great, yes and no. It's not fully non-conductive and is harder to clean off and has even a chance to destroy your motherboard because it's not fully non-conductive. It requires more experience, that's why this TIM shouldn't be recommended to any guy who hasn't re-applied TIM.

    AS5 has a burn-in time which means the temps will drop 3-5° after 24-48hours.

    All those disadvantages, the noctua nt-h1 doesn't have it. Non-conductive, easy to apply and clean & no burn-in time.

    Also, AS5 is very very old. Arctic silver MX4 is much better than AS5.

  15. #15
    I am Murloc! Cyanotical's Avatar
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    AS5 is also meant to be properly spread with something like a razor blade, and works beast with flat polished heatsinks

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  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Faithh View Post
    Great, yes and no. It's not fully non-conductive and is harder to clean off and has even a chance to destroy your motherboard because it's not fully non-conductive. It requires more experience, that's why this TIM shouldn't be recommended to any guy who hasn't re-applied TIM.
    I've reapplied AS5 after 1 month of use. Its a joke if you use the right solvent.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cyanotical View Post
    AS5 is also meant to be properly spread with something like a razor blade, and works beast with flat polished heatsinks
    No its not. AS5 manual specifically tells you to use either the pea or line method.

    http://www.arcticsilver.com/intel_ap...n_method.html#
    Last edited by yurano; 2012-11-24 at 07:26 AM.

  17. #17
    I am Murloc! Cyanotical's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yurano View Post
    No its not. AS5 manual specifically tells you to use either the pea or line method.
    "men don't use manuals" -TTL

    the razor blade method is the best, but its very tricky, and only works with certain heatsinks, but feel free to tell me the several dozen times i've done this and seen the results compared the pea method are wrong

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  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyanotical View Post
    "men don't use manuals" -TTL

    the razor blade method is the best, but its very tricky, and only works with certain heatsinks, but feel free to tell me the several dozen times i've done this and seen the results compared the pea method are wrong
    I don't see how this means that AS5 is 'meant' to be spread thin by razor blade. The average user is best off by going pea or line method. Line for Ivy Bridge processors.

  19. #19
    I am Murloc! Xuvial's Avatar
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    As someone who's used AS5, I will say that is stupidly thick and no amount of heatsink pressure seems to be able to spread that shit out properly. Especially not over a large GPU die. I went spread method with AS5 for my GTX580.

  20. #20
    Old God PizzaSHARK's Avatar
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    My brother used Antec Formula 6 and swears by it. He used the spread method, spreading it on the bottom of his 212+ rather than his i7. User reviews say that the compound is very thick and some people used credit cards instead of the included spatula thing to spread it.
    http://steamcommunity.com/id/PizzaSHARK
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