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Thermal paste charts

The relationship of the fluidity of a paste (i.e. its flow properties, the opposite of viscosity) and the maximum possible contact pressure of the used radiator construction can be seen by the different radiator structures and the respective results. The consistency of a paste is always a smaller or large spring foot for newcomers, because with increasing viscosity, the paste is then also what is called tough. In general, however, a paste with lower viscosity is much better to handle than a so-called "tough" paste, even at lower pressures, such as those found in Intel's push-pin fasteners. The interested reader can also read on the handling with heating before using viscous pastes in the thermal paste tutorial. Often only careful heating to just over 50°C helps to get them a little more supple for the job. The animation below clearly shows how the thermal paste moves away to the sides under pressure. I will go into more detail later on the relationship between the fluidity of a paste (i.e. its flow properties, the opposite of viscosity) and the maximum possible contact pressure of the cooler construction used. In general, however, a paste with lower viscosity is much better to handle than a so-called "tough" paste, even at lower pressures, such as those found in Intel's push-pin fasteners. The rather theoretical information of the manufacturers on thermal conductivity is therefore by no means a measure of the maximum performance achievable in practice in a certain combination of CPU, paste and radiator! The best cooler is no good if the appropriate thermal paste is not selected. Here, too, an unfavourable election can make it even worse than one might ideally gain from the supposed top product!

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About the author

Igor Wallossek

Editor-in-chief and name-giver of igor'sLAB as the content successor of Tom's Hardware Germany, whose license was returned in June 2019 in order to better meet the qualitative demands of web content and challenges of new media such as YouTube with its own channel.

Computer nerd since 1983, audio freak since 1979 and pretty much open to anything with a plug or battery for over 50 years.

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