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Recommendations requested: Best thermal paste and thermal pads for GPU  

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Hi All,
What do you recommend for thermal paste on a GPU? Also, do you have a link to some thermal pads? I don't like the ones that came with my block and want to replace them.
post #2 of 13
I've always used Arctic Silver 5 without an issue - yes even where there were thermal pads before... AS5 is not conductive, it is very slightly capacitive, so you do not want it on PCB traces. Other than that, IC Diamond has been good paste in the past, but I can't find it anywhere anymore.
post #3 of 13
For the GPU, I'd recommend Prolimatech PK-3, or TC Quantum.

For thermal pads, it doesn't matter too much what you use on the VRAM, but you want decent stuff for the VRMs.

Fujipoly has 17 W/mK pads that are the best I've seen. Frozen CPU is the only place I've seen them available in non-bulk quantities though: http://www.frozencpu.com/search.html?mv_profile=keyword_search&mv_session_id=eqjCM7LM&searchspec=fujipoly+17.0&go.x=0&go.y=0

I'd use the 11 or 17 W/mK pads on the VRMs, and more affordable ~6 W/mK (which is still way higher conductivity that stock pads) pads on the VRAM.

I would highly recommend against using any pastes where there is any easily perceptible gap between surfaces. Most pastes/greases are not remotely suitable for filling large gaps, and using them on VRAM is risky and wasteful.

I would also avoid any TIMs with metal components where they may touch surface mount components or bridge contacts. You don't need conductivity to cause a capacitive short.
Edited by Blameless - 2/6/13 at 9:02am
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post #4 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thanks - Is the 1mm thickness about right? Those 17 mk pads look like they'd be better than paste on the GPU! Would you recommend using the pads instead of paste for the gpu chip?
post #5 of 13
You can also order Fujipoly thermal pads from here: eBay UK
Edited by Tomtom35 - 12/18/14 at 2:55pm
post #6 of 13
Unless you already have stock of it, and are pinching pennies, you should never use AS5.

It is a terrible paste by modern standards. Lower than average performance, crazy long cure time, low lifespan, capacitive, in certain conditions can corrode the metal on your IHS/HS/WB, and it costs more than most competitors to boot.

Yes, it will get the job done, but less effectively, with higher risk, and for a higher cost. You wouldn't buy a $700 i3 with a faulty memory controller would you?

I really wish people would stop suggesting AS5 around here. It wore the crown for only a short period of time, and even then it wasn't the true best in any aspect, just be best in specifically performance, after cure and before EoL, among what could be bought off the shelf in most areas.



Ok, AS5 rant over. I always use Fujipoly Extreme thermal pads and whatever top tier safe TIM I can find cheapest or already have on hand. Some great, common options are Gelid Extreme, MX-4, TX-4, PK-2/PK-3, and NT-H1.

AS Ceramique 2 is probably the very most common, and cost effective solution. It is a great backup option, and I keep a large tube on hand for various reasons, but it won't get you quite the same level of performance as what I mentioned above (although it still outperforms AS5!).

I also really like IC Diamond, but I would not recommend it to anyone who doesn't already know they are in the market for it. It is hard to apply, smells super gross, and hard to clean, and is abrasive (can sand away the print on your IHS, or in extreme cases even crack an exposed die). It performs like an absolute champ if you apply it right, and will work in basically any condition, forever.
Edited by Zero4549 - 11/15/14 at 11:40pm
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post #7 of 13
I always use MX-4, MX-2 if I'm looking to save some money.
     
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post #8 of 13
What you guys think about "Antec formula 7 nano diamond" ?
post #9 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tomtom35 View Post

What you guys think about "Antec formula 7 nano diamond" ?

Its OK, but I'd avoid it unless it is super cheap locally or something.

Performance is similar to MX-2, which is still better than AS5 and no-names, but worse than anything else suggested so far except Ceramique 2.

Its pretty thick and "dry", so application can be difficult.
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post #10 of 13
use Artic m3 or m4 those m5 are crappy
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Overclock.net › Forums › Cooling › Water Cooling › Recommendations requested: Best thermal paste and thermal pads for GPU