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52

This is the standard "saran-wrap-in-place-of-condom" question. While some toothpastes may provide the correct type of thermal conductivity, "toothpaste" is too big a category to answer the question accurately. Worse, unless you want to make it a fun science project, nobody is going to be testing different types of toothpastes for thermal conductivity. That ...


34

I suspect its unlikely, though it depends on what you mean by colour. There are three fundamental modes of heat transfer for any material, and only one of them is directly affected by colour. Heat is transferred from the heat source to the heat sink, and from the heat sink to the air by conduction. Most heatsinks are made of copper (heavy, and relatively ...


22

This Wikipedia article has some information/discussion about that. I only repeat some links below. For the complete discussion you can look at the article. Heat Sink Color From http://www.radianheatsinks.com/support/faqs.html How does the color of a heat sink impact its thermal performance? In natural convection a black or dark colored heatsink ...


19

That would be a thermal pad, they are placed there to allow heat to travel more easily out of whatever chip it was placed against. Probably should add that they are also used when a perfect seal isn't possible, I.E. A space more then 1mm between chip/processor and cooling system. So if doesn't look like it was compressed much, may want to replace it with ...


16

It should be, given that in the same amount of time, it could've been attached to a CPU and has to enure that as well. If you don't trust it, just scrape it off and apply fresh coolingpaste (which is different than those strips. The paste can actually dry out. Journeyman Geek points out that if its slightly hard it should be ok, if it crumbles like dried ...


13

The heat radiates from the surface of a heat sink, so the greater the surface area, the better the heatsink. Roughly speaking, if you cut a load of slots in your big block of aluminium, you could end up with, say, 5 times the surface area, and the heatsink can then get rid of 5 times the heat. Have a read of the Wikipedia article - the big block is, in ...


12

The thermal paste is there to provide good heat conductivity between the CPU and the heatsink. If you separate the two, it is best for you to reapply some thermal paste (VERY thin layer) in order to maintain good thermal contact between the two. I usually prefer to clean both the heat sink and the CPU with a q-tip and some alcohol before reapplying thermal ...


11

Those are known as Thermally-Conductive Pads, and are used as the equivalent of thermal paste. They're usually made from wax or silicone, and become very soft and pliable when heated up. They're not as good as thermal paste, but they are less messy and much easier to deal with, so this makes them a good choice when heat transfer efficiency doesn't have to ...


10

Can you? Yes Should you? Probably not. Do you really want to risk it? A tube of thermal paste costs 15$ at a computer repair shop and is good for several applications.


10

Use rubbing alchohol. It cuts the grease and dries quickly/safely for electronics. The preferred way to remove typical silicone oil-based thermal grease from a component or heat sink is by using isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol). If none is available, pure acetone is also a valid method of removal. From Wikipedia Also the suggestion to use ...


7

Fins give you more surface area for cooling, a large block has less surface area and would still have a hotter center than something that can get air right to the center of "the block".


7

If this is a new paste you just put, you only want it to be a uniform thin layer on top of the CPU or the heatsink (don't put it on both surfaces), so you don't need to scrape it all off completely. I usually use an old credit card as a spatula to spread the thermal paste thinly and evenly. You can use a similar soft plastic tool (you don't want to damage ...


6

You need to be careful you don't over-tighten the screws, that could lead to a cracked heat sink or even CPU. If the heat sink has come/been taken off your safest approach is to carefully clean the old paste off both parts an apply fresh. It can't be stressed enough that there needs to be good thermal conductivity between the CPU and the heatsink as ...


6

The copper square is the heat sink base. The copper tube is a heat pipe. The black metal sheets are fins. The whole thing, including the fan, is the heat sink.


5

Applying thermal paste is not that hard, there are different application methods depending on if the CPU has a heatspreader built on it or if the core is exposed. If the core is exposed I suggest using this guide from Arctic Silver: http://www.arcticsilver.com/pdf/appmeth/int/ss/intel_app_method_surface_spread_v1.1.pdf If the core has a heatspreader on it: ...


5

I have always scraped it off with a credit card, then used alcohol applied with paper towels and a q-tip to clean the residue. Wikipedia has more detail though: Computer processor heatsinks utilize a variety of designs to promote better thermal transfer between components. Some thermal greases have a durability up to at least 8 years. Flat and smooth ...


5

It might be better than nothing, but unless toothpaste has unsuspected thermal conductivity, I'd say it's a bad idea. You also have to consider what the ingredients of the toothpaste might do in contact with your CPU. I suspect it would be pretty conductive in an electrical sense. You don't want electrical conductivity. Better get some real thermal paste. ...


5

You need to turn them in the direction of the arrow (ant-clockwise), then pull up on them. It's a bit hard to see in the underside picture if it's currently locked in or not. If you still can't get them to come out try pinching the underside of the pins with some pliers while pulling them out.


5

You might see a slight decrease in temperature as your paste sets in, but it isn't going to be anything drastic... a degree or two at most. Remember, the only reason we use thermal paste is because the two surfaces we are mating are not perfectly flat. Thermal paste fills in the microscopic pits on the surface of the processor and the heatsink effectively ...


4

Can you verify the voltages using a different tool, perhaps Everest or SpeedFan ? Those +5v and -12V rails are low, I want to confirm that this is because of HWMonitor readings being incorrect. I'd start with examining if the thermal paste has dried up. If so, you should re-apply the thermal paste.


4

Use a benchmark program such as 3DMark or a “burn-in” utility such as Prime95. If you want to have your CPU do something more productive while under a heavy load, use a distributed program like BOINC or Folding@home to have the CPU cycles put towards calculating things for finding cures to diseases, searching for extra-terrestrials, etc. To keep an eye on ...


4

This maybe a stupid answer but you are cleaning off the existing thermal paste, right? I've had the same behavior on systems where the paste is 1) too much, 2) not evenly distributed, 3) not enough.


4

I remember hearing about this at Dan's Data a while back, and he went back and forth with Arctic Silver's Nevin on the issue. I think the basic idea was that toothpaste will dry up faster than true thermal paste, perhaps leaving you a lot worse off than if there was nothing at all. So, if you like removing your heatsink as much as I do, then no, it's not ...


4

As you have narrowed the problem down to overheating on the CPU, most likely the fan/heatsink became damaged during your move. Devices with moving parts such as the hard drive and fans are most vulnerable to vibrations and problems that can happen when moving - I have seen it happen loads of times to the hard drive and it is rare to get damage to the fan ...


4

The CPU is designed to be easily fitted and removed. On most motherboards there's a lever which actually locks it into place. The fact that the machine booted and appears to be working is a good sign. If you'd done any damage to the pins/connectors it'd be more likely that it wouldn't work at all. A temperature of 40oC is about right.


4

First, if you want to save a few bucks, depending on your current heatsink/fan design (some are combined and not seperated easily), you might be able to just replace the fan. You said it was dying, and I assume you meant the fan on the heatsink is dying. Got any pictures of information about your current setup? Without actualy recommending an exact heatsink ...


4

On the top of the board, there should be a number of black buttons you pushed down when placing the heat sink. They should have some sort of markings on how to unlock them to pull them back up. (Usually by turning them 90 degrees) When they pull back up, the black pins you see in your picture automatically retract, enabling you to remove the heat sink. Make ...


4

The is no technical need to burn in a new computer or new hardware. Nor will the thermal paste bond with the CPU or the heat sink. The cooling is done by passing heat between the CPU metal and the polished heat sinks metal and the heat transfer of this is significantly higher than if you use thermal paste to conduct the heat. What thermal paste is used for ...


4

Its the same reason you'd do it on a car tire when installing it. The idea behind tightening opposite screws is to make sure that the force is even - you end up tightening a pair, and they hold down the unit nice and flat while you tighten the other two. You're unlikely to have damaged anything, and if its cooling properly, you've tightened it enough make ...



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