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Before anything else, keep in mind that thermal paste is a high margin product. In other words, the market is filled with it. Even though the exact composition and ingredients of most thermal pastes you can find on the market remains a well-kept secret, it doesn’t mean that all of these products work in the same way. There are some thermal compounds that work better than others, but the challenge here is finding which one works the best for your specific needs. In this short guide, we’re going to list a few of the best thermal compounds we’ve found on today’s market. Also, we’ve also outlined some things that you need to consider when looking for the best thermal compound.
ARCTIC MX-4 Thermal Compound Paste
The ARCTIC MX-4 Thermal Compound Paste is a product that’s deemed to be better than liquid metal. The product has carbon micro-particle ingredients that will lead to a significantly high thermal conductivity.
StarTech.com 1.5g Metal Oxide Thermal CPU Paste Compound Tube
The StarTech.com 1.5g Metal Oxide Thermal CPU Paste Compound Tube promotes a better thermal conductivity than most other similar products on the market. It brings about a metal-based compound that has metal oxide, and it offers a thermal conductivity of over 1.93 W/m-K. Using it on your computer’s components will allow stable performance over a broad range of temperature levels.
Noctua NT-H1 Thermal Compound
If you don’t want to spend a lot of your hard-earned cash on a thermal compound, then perhaps you might want to take a look at the Noctua NT-H1. This thermal paste can be applied to multiple computers, and you might even have some spare for their graphics cards.
What to Look For?
Do note that the composition of the thermal compound will determine its thermal conductivity, viscosity, durability, and its electrical conductivity. Despite the many variations you can find on the market, many thermal pastes have basic underlying compounds, namely silicone (the binding agent) and zinc oxide. However, most of the basic compositions of thermal compounds no longer exist in today’s market as most manufacturers already started mixing different ingredients into the products, such as aluminum.
There are even some thermal compounds that contain silver, while other pastes will be based on graphite. Some variants will even remove the silicone component while not disclosing the full list of ingredients to consumers. However, retailers still claim that their products can deliver excellent electrical conductivity with their products, but it’s going to be a hit-or-miss situation.
As such, it’s very important to read the reviews of other consumers before attempting to buy any particular thermal compound you see on the market. In doing so, you can ease your mind of worry as you ensure yourself that you’re going to get the right product for your needs.
Regardless of their composition or price, all thermal compounds share on thing in common – they fall short of spreaders and heat sinks regarding thermal conductivity. However, the best thermal compound will do a good job in delivering a decent thermal conduction, and it’s definitely going to be less expensive than having to buy a heat sink or a spreader.