I do what I can

Random thoughts from Mauricio Teixeira…

Better thermal compounds helps cooling

with 3 comments

I just want to express a recent experience I had about thermal compounds.

My home desktop uses an Athlon 64 3000+, which was running on very high temps due to improper ventilation on the computer room. Unfortunately I can’t change the room, not even add an air-conditioner, so I have to find other ways of cooling it.

I’ve already tried adding more fans to the case, different configurations on the air flow inside, change the case position and location, but nothing did any great effect on the high temp issue. The best I could get was a 5ºC drop. After a little research, I decided to change the original thermal pad that came with the stock CPU cooler to some other highly recommended by overclockers. By the way, I’m not overclocking this processor as I did with my old Sempron. I simply don’t see the need for this.

So I decided to buy the Arctic Silver Céramique, along with their suggested ArctiClean cleaning kit. After half an hour reading the instructions, cleaning the processor and the fan very carefully and applying it, I’m very impressed and very happy with the results.

After the proper applying of the thermal compound I noticed a 10ºC drop on the idle temperature, and 1KRPM drop on the fan speed. That’s very impressive. So now I have less heat with less noise. Even on a steady 10 minutes 100% CPU usage the max temperature is still 10ºC less than when I was using the stock thermal pad, while the CPU fan runs 500RPM slower.

Bottom line, having big CPU fans or big cases with many noisy fans aren’t always the best ways of cooling a processor down. Some times you just need to help the heat reach the heat sink properly so it can be quickly dispersed, and that the Arctic Silver Céramique does that easily.

By the way, I’ve been also recommended the Arctic Silver 5, which some say would do the work much better, but since it’s 90% silver, an error when applying it may cause shot circuit on the processor. So I prefer to walk on the safe side and choose a ceramic compound. But if you plan to overclock or want even lower temps, maybe you should give AS5 a try.


Written by netmask

novembro 15, 2006 às 22:03

Publicado em hardware

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3 Respostas

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  1. Hi there.

    I have the same CPU as you and, since we both live in Brazil (I’m in Manaus ATM), I decided to ask you one thing.

    Where did you buy the Arctic Silver Céramique?

    BTW, my motherboard is a ASUS A8N-SLI and the chipset fan just died. Yes, it’s dead, not spinning at all… If you have any advice of a place where I can order a new fan I’ll be really grateful.

    – Ademar


    novembro 16, 2006 at 14:43

  2. I bought it from SmartDATA. It was cheap, and the delivery very fast (less than 24h).

    I guess they also have the NB fan, but if they don’t, try Spon.

    Good luck!


    novembro 16, 2006 at 21:17

  3. Wow, thanks!

    You have no idea how happy I am. I was looking for stores like these since a long time ago. 🙂

    SmartDATA has the cooler, the thermal paste and, even better: good mouse-pads! (I was about to order a mouse-pad from ebay, at a much higher price).

    – Ademar


    novembro 17, 2006 at 15:48

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