Ok, In see alot of post where one guy gets like really low temps ( fake or otherwise) and then somebody gets really high temps... it's always blamed on the HSF... but often they are using the same exact one. what gives... besides having crap ventilation what would cause this?...
I think it might be the improper use of thermal paste.
I'm pretty new at this so I'm not claiming anything but from what I have seen/experienced in the last 2 days.

too much paste... poor heat transfer, high temps.

not enough paste... poor heat transfer, high temps.

Sticky pads.. kinda in the middle not as good as the paste done properly better than if done incorectly.

Problem is the thermal compounds give little or no directions or indications how much to use. Both brands I have don't say one word about what you even do with it let alone how to use it.

Can one of you more experienced guys write a little sticky on this aspect as it has a great effect on how well our HSF work and what pros and cons there are to conductive and non-conductive paste... cermaics..ETC


It's quite simple...all you need is a thin layer, though it does need to cover the entire core surface; otherwise it does no good. Many people will apply it and use a credit card to spread it properly - I don't see a need to. I apply a small amount in the center and use the end of the tube to spread it evenly over the core, so it's covered (not very lightly, but not heavily) and count on the heatsink to thin the layer of the compound when it's attached...I've always maintained low temperatures with Athlons and AthlonXPs...even with stock HSFs and poor case air circulation
  •  boa
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thats how I normally do it (like Telexen), with a cc or razor, although I've found if you clean part of an antistatic bag with alcohol you can spread the tim even thinner over the core with your finger. You can also rub it in to the part of the HS that goes over the core, then wipe the exces off with a lintfree cloth. I use lintfree coffee filters. I've found a poor job of applying a tim can increase your temps by 10C.
2003-12-01T23:21:05Z  gives great instructions on how to apply thermal paste. Personally I think trial and error is the best way to learn!
Accodting to AS site your whole chip thing doesn't have to be covered. Thats the way I did it. My highest temp so far has been 57 running Prime95 for 7 hours. Is that good/bad?
Only the part with the actual die has to be covered. So the raised part in the middle should be completely covered, but not the stuff around it (all those funny little surface-mount parts, etc.)
A P4 doesn't have a raised part.
Like Boa said, 10C.. that's a lot. when I see somebody bash a HSF and say it's crap and their CPU temp is like 50C+ not even OC'd I just have to wonder. Who is the real culprit...can any HSF or Thermal Paste be that bad and still be on the market? I would think Peanut Butter would work better than that. would any name product really work that bad? Are they bashing a product to pimp what they like.. Ie. making it up? The internet forums and postings on sellers sites seems to be as much about misinformation as information at times. There isn't anyone to enforce the truth or let you know who this person is and do they know what they are even talking about. At least I know I can come here and get input from 1/2 dozen people and take the advise from people who know what they are talking about.

I can see clearly after going to that link and seeing the pictures my application is about 2x as thick as it needs to be. That's my fault . However, The product I was using though was like clay... wouldn't spread at all just rolled up into little balls and lumps and chunk off. I couldn't get it smooth for nothing. I mixed it down and it was like frosting on a cake. Call it inexperience, now I know to perservere . I'll try again and go much thinner this time.

I was surprised though that site said 200 hours and numerous heat cycles to get the TP to give maximum transfer. I thought a few hours would be enough.

Thanks again,
PumpkinMan: I'd suggest switching thermal compound brands...

I personally use the stuff you can get at RadioShack, but I don't overclock (yet.)