Technology.Life.Insight.

Your next thermal compound: Mayonnaise?

I’m building a new PC right now, which I’ll detail in another post, and am spending hours in research to catch up on the latest and greatest to make my selections. Unless you’re an avid follower of the ever-changing PC parts space, you might not keep up with the day to day there unless it pertains to a relevant activity: new PC build.
Thermal compound, aka thermal grease, aka thermal interface material aka TIM, is the important heat conducting stuff that goes most notably between the heat spreader of your CPU and the heatsink + fan mounted to it. A year ago, the hardware review site extraordinaire hardwaresecrets.com did a comprehensive comparison of almost every relevant TIM on the market including some common household materials, the likes of mayo, butter, and toothpaste. While I’d never seriously entertain the notion of applying mayo to protect my multi-hundred dollar chips, it sure is interesting to see how these materials fared. 
Artic Silver 5, as my TIM of choice, is one of the highest reviewed materials available and has been for the better part of a decade so I’m happy to see it maintain its rightful spot in the top 3 as part of this test. What’s shocking is how well mayo actually performed, beating out many products on the market and tying with the famous CPU cooler manufacturer Noctua’s NT-H1 product. There are many other famous names on this list beaten by mayo such as Zalman and Rosewill. Just goes to show, all TIMs are not created equal and most appear to be nothing more than expensive tubes of snake oil, er, grease rather. 


Check out the full article on HardwareSecrets.com.

1 comment:

  1. Your self praise for choosing Artic Silver 5 bears a closer look it, is third equal along with 6 other compounds- so could equally be said to be in 8th position if the list didn't use alphabetical order.
    I doubt that the test result resolution, accuracy and repeatability is as good as it has been blindly taken to be. If the REAL tolerance is +/- 1 degree then 18 other compounds are within that range. As well as being more realistic (in the absence of proof of accuracy/repeatability testing) you could claim it as being best using your alphabetical order premise used in your original evaluation.

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