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What thermal pastes are the best?

It's getting to three years and I feel like I should probably replace my thermal paste for CPU and GPU. Kyronaut looks really good but a lot of people say if you don't apply properly or have the right mounting pressure it's useless, more so than other compounds apparently. Additionally, it's very expensive so I was wondering what you guys thought was the best. Thanks.

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As long as you get reasonably good paste, it doesn't make enough difference to matter.  You're talking about 1-2c at most.  (And more often, mounting it not perfectly will have more impact than the paste)

 

Terrible paste:  Bad
Decent paste:  All you need

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6 minutes ago, Harflite said:

It's getting to three years and I feel like I should probably replace my thermal paste for CPU and GPU. Kyronaut looks really good but a lot of people say if you don't apply properly or have the right mounting pressure it's useless, more so than other compounds apparently. Additionally, it's very expensive so I was wondering what you guys thought was the best. Thanks.

I wouldn't repaste your GPU, it's fine.  They're not designed to be maintained.  I haven't had any temp issues in a 4 year old 1080Ti, for example.

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There's not much difference in pastes, but there is some. When I went to install my Artic Liquid Freezer II 280, I realized I was out of my trusty Kryonaut paste, so I used the included AX-4 paste from Artic. I didn't actually care for Artic's paste at all. It was very goopy, and temps were a little higher than I expected. I ordered some more Kyronaut and repasted, and temps dropped a few degrees at full load. Maybe I pasted better the second time around. There's always some variability in this stuff, but I've yet to find anything I like better than Kryonaut.

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SYY-157 is excellent, as is Thermalright TFX. TF8 is pretty decent too.

AMD R9 5900X @ + 150MHz | Thermalright Frost Commander 140/NF-A14 iPPC/SYY-157
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41 minutes ago, Harflite said:

snip

26 minutes ago, freeagent said:

SYY-157 is excellent, as is Thermalright TFX

 

mind that those two are conductive

 

never mind! manufacturer says they're not

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3 minutes ago, LauriHimself said:

 

mind that those two are conductive

What's bad about that?

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3 minutes ago, LauriHimself said:

 

mind that those two are conductive

TFX according to Thermalright is not:
http://www.thermalright.com/product/tfx-thermal-paste-6-2g/

 

I can't find out if SYY-157 is or not, can't find a manuf's site.

 

1 minute ago, Harflite said:

What's bad about that?

Electrically conductive can be a big problem in a paste.  But the vast majority of them are not electrically conductive.

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16 minutes ago, Harflite said:

What's bad about that?

sorry, i meant electrically conductive. should have clarified. NO, they are not ^^

you have to be more carefull with it not to short anything  < this however remains true

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2 minutes ago, tkitch said:

TFX according to Thermalright is not:
http://www.thermalright.com/product/tfx-thermal-paste-6-2g/

the SYY-157 and Thermalright TFX are carbon based, so they should be afaik.

if they say the tfx isnt, so be it i guess ^^

 

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1 minute ago, LauriHimself said:

the SYY-157 and Thermalright TFX are carbon based, so they should be afaik.

if they say the tfx isnt, so be it i guess ^^

 

So I should avoid electrically conductive pastes?

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7 minutes ago, Harflite said:

What's bad about that?

The traditional conductive paste is conductonaut or some other indium/gallium liquid metal.  In that case the issue is the gallium which will spontaneously form alloys with a couple of different metals making for seriously bad juju.  Like eat pita in your extremely flat cooler plate and make it worthless.  Great forethought must be put into liquid metal. Gallium has its ugly side.  A conductive paste could also have other electro chemical issues like galvanic action.  A serious problem for pipe fitters. I understand pure indium in the form of perforated sheets can be used but it’s mounting pressure is above what CPUs generally use and it’s still conductive.

Life is like a bowl of chocolates: there are all these little crinkly paper cups everywhere.

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1 minute ago, Harflite said:

So I should avoid electrically conductive pastes?

i would do so

i have done some further research tho and according to the manufacturer turns out those two pastes are NON-conductive tho they are carbon based...

see me wrong and confused ^^

i'm now going to correct my other posts a lil whiser...

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2 minutes ago, LauriHimself said:

i would do so

i have done some further research tho and according to the manufacturer turns out those two pastes are NON-conductive tho they are carbon based...

see me wrong and confused ^^

i'm now going to correct my other posts a lil whiser...

The best results I ever had were with a paste full of microscopic industrial diamonds which is more or less a carbon paste.  Wasn’t ic diamond.  Some paste that was also diamond but died. Diamond is hex linked carbon. 

Life is like a bowl of chocolates: there are all these little crinkly paper cups everywhere.

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3 minutes ago, Bombastinator said:

Diamond is hex linked carbon

true, haven't thought about that. lemme see if IC-D is marketed as carbon based. never used it, so never got a chance to get into it. I'm a kryonaut boi ^^.

 

thank you and @tkitch for correcting me. 

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5 minutes ago, LauriHimself said:

true, haven't thought about that. lemme see if IC-D is marketed as carbon based. never used it, so never got a chance to get into it. I'm a kryonaut boi ^^.

 

thank you and @tkitch for correcting me. 

no worries.  There's an absolute disaster of a video on YT right now with people digging themselves to the earth's core trying to argue how bad conductive pastes are.  Meanwhile, they're naming non-conductive pastes.  

Looking it up is easy 😉 So I'm busy getting my snark on in YT land because of it.

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Another vote for Kryonaut, I've tried a few over the years and although there isn't a massive difference, always had the best results with this one.

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Conductive would be LM as noted, you could be thinking of AS5, which is slightly capacitive. I used AS5 for the better part of a decade and had no problems with it. I still think it’s ok paste too.

AMD R9 5900X @ + 150MHz | Thermalright Frost Commander 140/NF-A14 iPPC/SYY-157
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1 hour ago, LauriHimself said:

i would do so

i have done some further research tho and according to the manufacturer turns out those two pastes are NON-conductive tho they are carbon based...

see me wrong and confused ^^

i'm now going to correct my other posts a lil whiser...

Wait.. a carbon based paste? That would make sense. Soot is often used as a makeshift insulator.  The liquid metal ones, no.  That couldn’t happen. Whether a material is considered an insulator or a conductor is not a question of yes/no but how much.

Life is like a bowl of chocolates: there are all these little crinkly paper cups everywhere.

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The difference between the best you can buy and the worst is a few degrees. 

Friends don't let friends use Userbenchmark. Ban the term "bottleneck." Corps aren't your friends. If the PC does what you need it to do well enough, it's good enough. Don't build the "best" system, build the system that makes you happy. 

 

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Keep chasing those C’s and sooner or later they all start adding up..

AMD R9 5900X @ + 150MHz | Thermalright Frost Commander 140/NF-A14 iPPC/SYY-157
Asus Strix B550-F Gaming | 4x8GB G.Skill Trident Z Mix @ 1866MHz 14-14-14-34 1T 1.5v
EVGA RTX 3070Ti FTW3 Ultra @ 2085/1212MHz | WD SN750 500GB, 1000GB, 545S 256GB
Seasonic Prime GX-750 | Fractal Design Meshify C | TY-143, TL-D14X, TL-C12 Pro, NF-F12 iPPC

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4 hours ago, Harflite said:

It's getting to three years and I feel like I should probably replace my thermal paste for CPU and GPU. Kyronaut looks really good but a lot of people say if you don't apply properly or have the right mounting pressure it's useless, more so than other compounds apparently. Additionally, it's very expensive so I was wondering what you guys thought was the best. Thanks.

 

Subzero / LN2: Kryonaut Extreme, Kingpin KPX, Gelid GC Extreme

General daily: Thermalright TFX (laptops especially), Thermalright TF8, Gelid GC Extreme, Kryonaut Extreme.  Warning: Kryonaut Extreme and Thermalright TFX are currently highway robbery then rob your kidney on top of it ($$).

Best bang for the buck: SYY-157 8g (laptops especially), FuzeIce Plus (7 grams).  Also great on laptops

 

http://forum.notebookreview.com/threads/which-thermal-paste-to-buy-and-apply-traditional-and-liquid-metal.806840/

 

SYY-157 is NOT conductive.  None of the main pastes are.  The old Arctic Silver 5 is capacitive, so care must be taken with that, and that's terrible on modern systems anyway.  Only Galinstan based liquid metals these days are conductive (unless you want to go ham with copper anti-sieze).

 

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000LGA6BQ/ (yes some people on techpowerup have actually used this on CPU's successfully.  I do NOT know about direct die applications--but the same precautions must be used as if you were using Liquid Metal)

 

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004GZG04U/ (untested but it was rumored this should perform even better than the above one).

 

(I only mention these two compounds because they seem to avoid the main drawback with liquid metal--the gallium slowly absorbing into copper over time, causing eventual dry/hot spots, and being totally unable to be used on aluminum).

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Side note: autocorrect is my nemesis.  I was briefly imagining writing that headline and having it come out “thermal pastie” which cause a brief thought about what a thermal pastor might be..  it was just a dark path.

Life is like a bowl of chocolates: there are all these little crinkly paper cups everywhere.

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