Originally Posted by Oscuro
Honestly, I put a small bead on my 8800GTX when I installed the AC 8800 extreme HSF on it. Works fine still.
Plan to do the same when I put the Scythe Musashi on my 9800GTX+
Edit: Reasoning? I don't like the spread out method, because with your finger, you will get high an low spots. Some of these low spots could form an air bubble when the HS is placed onto the core.
When you squish down a bead in the center of the core, there is no chance for air to get between the TIM and any surface, as it spreads.
That's my thoughts on the matter anyways.
Even with some high and low spots, the pressure of the heatsink will still spread the TIM evenly...
The reason why you should use a bead only on CPU's is because the actual cores of CPU's are located more in the centre of the IHS, so even if the TIM doesn't reach the edges, you're fine.
On the other hand, with GPU's, you're applying the TIM directly to the core, in which the entire core should be covered. You risk the chance of not covering the core entirely, or spreading too much, and having it overflow