How Do You Paste?

AgentCooper

RIP Julee Cruise ☹️
Moderator
I was just going through a drawer and found an ancient syringe of Thermal Grizzly. I binned it and went online with the intention of ordering a new paste but ended up falling down a bit of an internet rabbit hole…

Now whenever I’ve pasted or repasted, I’ve simply put a very small blob right on the centre of the CPU. Then applied the cooler / pump head, taking care to not press down too heavily on a particular side to ensure an even spread. Never even thought twice about that method. But online I saw pictures of quite a few different variations.

1) Single line right down the middle
2) Small X shape
3) Three small lines
4) The blob, but then using something to spread the paste manually.

Now it seems to me as though there’s the potential for all the above to go a bit wrong, excess paste spilling over the sides, creating bubbles in your layer etc.

But now I can’t stop thinking about it, have I been pasting like a moron for years? My temperatures would lead me to believe the answer is no but I’m intrigued to see what others do…
 

SpyderTracks

We love you Ukraine
Moderator
I was just going through a drawer and found an ancient syringe of Thermal Grizzly. I binned it and went online with the intention of ordering a new paste but ended up falling down a bit of an internet rabbit hole…

Now whenever I’ve pasted or repasted, I’ve simply put a very small blob right on the centre of the CPU. Then applied the cooler / pump head, taking care to not press down too heavily on a particular side to ensure an even spread. Never even thought twice about that method. But online I saw pictures of quite a few different variations.

1) Single line right down the middle
2) Small X shape
3) Three small lines
4) The blob, but then using something to spread the paste manually.

Now it seems to me as though there’s the potential for all the above to go a bit wrong, excess paste spilling over the sides, creating bubbles in your layer etc.

But now I can’t stop thinking about it, have I been pasting like a moron for years? My temperatures would lead to believe the answer is no but I’m intrigued to see what others do…
This is the eternal dilemma!

I do the same as you with a normal paste with the blob in the middle.

But the new Kryonaut Extreme paste is a very different paste at its core so you would apply that by literally painting it on strip by strip.
 

AgentCooper

RIP Julee Cruise ☹️
Moderator
But the new Kryonaut Extreme paste is a very different paste at its core so you would apply that by literally painting it on strip by strip.
Is that the magic stuff you posted the other day?

I went for Noctua brand in the end, I don’t think the 3800X will require anything quite that powerful 🙂
 

JUNI0R

VALUED CONTRIBUTOR
I was just going through a drawer and found an ancient syringe of Thermal Grizzly. I binned it and went online with the intention of ordering a new paste but ended up falling down a bit of an internet rabbit hole…

Now whenever I’ve pasted or repasted, I’ve simply put a very small blob right on the centre of the CPU. Then applied the cooler / pump head, taking care to not press down too heavily on a particular side to ensure an even spread. Never even thought twice about that method. But online I saw pictures of quite a few different variations.

1) Single line right down the middle
2) Small X shape
3) Three small lines
4) The blob, but then using something to spread the paste manually.

Now it seems to me as though there’s the potential for all the above to go a bit wrong, excess paste spilling over the sides, creating bubbles in your layer etc.

But now I can’t stop thinking about it, have I been pasting like a moron for years? My temperatures would lead to believe the answer is no but I’m intrigued to see what others do…
Y... You're telling me you don't put paste between the socket and the CPU? That's where you're going wrong! ;)

In all seriousness, in the couple times I've applied a cooler I've always gone for the X pattern then sometimes done the dots in the quarters when the paste keeps running :ROFLMAO:
 

Scott

Behold The Ford Mondeo
Moderator
I always apply a layer of paste. Blob in the middle then spread it out myself evenly. Never had an issue either.

It matters far less with premium paste though.

When it comes to the liquid metal you are given a little bud to spread it out with. That's effectively what I've always done with paste regardless.

Many years ago I was a bit paranoid about not having enough paste so what I tended to do was a thin layer evenly spread, and then a small blob right in the middle. Small enough that even if it over-spilled it wouldn't be much..... but it would allow the heatsink to fill in any gaps that my stingy spread of paste hadn't allowed for. This worked too, but found over the years that it's un-necessary.
 

Scott

Behold The Ford Mondeo
Moderator
Don't blob this big though....

81N6i6z7qQL._SL1600_.jpg
 

Scott

Behold The Ford Mondeo
Moderator
With normal paste it's non conductive so if there is a surplus it wont do any harm.

IME it causes quite a bit of excess heat. As much as it's a great conductor when it's thin and in direct contact with the heatsink, it's also an amazing insulator when over the edge of the die and only in contact with the board/air.

When I received my Octane my temps were through the roof. Took it apart and the die was swimming in paste. Sorted that and got the temps running well. I had to RMA the laptop due to screen bleed and when I received it back the temps were away again. Took it apart and it was swimming in paste again. Sorted it and got the best temps I had seen so left it at that until I went down the LM route.

Sidenote - When I queried with PCS as to the reasoning, apparently they had been told/trained to use the entire tube of paste for installing premium options. I suggested a re-visit to that thinking but not sure if it ever took off. It's the reason I very rarely ever suggest the premium offering on here.
 

0Yatake

Active member
Ive done it mine today for the first time, i tried to make a single line like how it showed on a yt video tutorial, but it was a complete mess what I done😭 I ended up fixing it a bit with a card...

The results though are awesome!😍 the cpu doesnt go beyond roughly 78° unlike before it went over 95° easly.

I used Noctua NT-H1, I believe is a good one
 

barlew

MOST VALUED CONTRIBUTOR
So I've always just done the blob method and never really been too bothered about the amount. The general rule of thumb is as long as you have enough you can't have too much.

Too much thermal paste should not increase temps because the force of the cooler when correctly tightened squeezes out the excess and reduces the distance between the cold plate of the cooler and the IHS to the correct tolerance.

As long as your thermal paste is not conductive using too much is not a problem (at least it never has been for me). It is just a waste of thermal paste and messy.

Gamers Nexus did a great video testing this:
 

Scott

Behold The Ford Mondeo
Moderator
Gamers Nexus did a great video testing this:

I watched that years ago but in my own experience I disagree. Unfortunately I don't really know what caused my variance, I can only put it down to the fact that once enclosed in a case and used in a real world scenario, it has an impact.

Although, to be fair, this was on my laptop, which may be the direct correlation to my experience.

There have also been videos showing the different patterns effect on the actual pressure pattern of the CPU heatsink itself, and what methods were the best to avoid bubbles :D
 

barlew

MOST VALUED CONTRIBUTOR
I watched that years ago but in my own experience I disagree. Unfortunately I don't really know what caused my variance, I can only put it down to the fact that once enclosed in a case and used in a real world scenario, it has an impact.

Although, to be fair, this was on my laptop, which may be the direct correlation to my experience.

There have also been videos showing the different patterns effect on the actual pressure pattern of the CPU heatsink itself, and what methods were the best to avoid bubbles :D
Yeh fair one. I can certainly see how using ridiculously excessive amounts could act as a conductor.

In my experience though as long as it doesn't look ridiculous it will be OK : )
 

NoddyPirate

VALUED CONTRIBUTOR
In my experience though as long as it doesn't look ridiculous it will be OK : )
I think that's quite true really - using a small amount, but which is enough to be squeezed across the face of the IHS, then it won't make any difference what pattern or technique you use for the most part. But I also can see @Scott 's point too. Specific circumstances will dictate for individual cases I suppose.

When I replaced my own CPU on my 1920's Lenovo I blobbed. I recently replaced both CPU's on a friends 1930's Dell Precision gigantic desktop thingy and I went for the X's for both of those.

So I guess I'm an ex Blobbing X'er?
 
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