|33-Way Thermal Interface Material Comparison|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Cooling|
|Written by Olin Coles|
|Tuesday, 04 March 2008|
Page 8 of 8
TIM Project Epilogue
Because of the overwhelming response to this article and with the assistance of manufacturer feedback, Benchmark Reviews has planned to revisit many of the top products which made it into round two of this project with similar test results. In this future "part II" article, each test will include a period of constant thermal cycling to allow for a basic cure time. Although this procedure would have been impractical with the large test group used in this article, it would be worth the effort to conduct on a more refined test group.
EDITORS NOTE: Benchmark Reviews has published a new article since this one was released, titled Best Thermal Paste Application Methods. This article dicusses the various methods and patterns used on standard and Heat-pipe Direct Touch coolers.
UPDATE 14 March 2008: Benchmark Reviews has read through a long list of suggestions from the community. In preparation for a second Thermal Interface Article using cure times, many of the original manufacturers were contacted for their suggestions. Surprisingly, only a select few products are said to 'require' curing; and nearly all manufacturers agreed that their product would need little more than a series of thermal cycles to level out the material. We have also added a few new names based on valuable community suggestions, and will be testing these products in our next article:
(0) No Curing Time or Special Application Suggested
(1) Antec Formula 5 Application Instructions (no curing time recommended)
(2) Arctic Silver II Application Instructions(48-hours minimum curing time recommended)
(3) Arctic Silver 3 Application Instructions (up to 200-hours recommended curing time)
(4) Arctic Silver 5 Application Instructions (up to 200-hours recommended curing time)
(5) Arctic Silver Ceramique Application Instructions (25-hours minimum recommended curing time)
(6) IC Seven Carat Diamond Application Instructions (10-minute evaporation time, 2-hour curing recommended)
(7) CooLaboratory Liquid Pro Application Instructions (no curing time recommended)
UPDATE 16 April 2008: Benchmark Reviews has begun to test our new collection of TIM products using a Intel P4 Northwood 3.0 GHz CPU overclocked to 3.61 GHz (1.648V). To ensure uniform distribution of thermal interface material we are using Intel socket 478 stock reference coolers which utilize lever arms to compress the unit onto the processor. So far, this is proving to be a very successful configuration. Additionally, we are going to make our entire test results available (hundreds of entries) and screenshots in a package download.
UPDATE 14 June 2009: Since this article was first published March 2008, Benchmark Reviews has conducted a new set of tests in search of the best thermal pastes. Our results have been published in the 80-way Thermal Interface Material Performance Test review article.