Jan 22, 2014

How much thermal paste to use?

What method should be used to determine how much thermal paste to use on a CPU?

How-To: Properly Apply Thermal Paste and Install a CPU

"Building a PC is a many-step process, but one in particular stands out as being intimidating to first-timers: properly mounting a CPU and cooler. Why? Because, generally speaking, that one little cpu chip is simultaneously the smallest, most delicate, and most expensive part of your system. Mount the cooler wrong, or improperly apply the thermal paste and you’re looking at (at best) a drop in performance and system crashes, or (at worst) a $200 disaster.

But don’t worry! It’s actually not terribly hard to install a new CPU, as long as you know what you’re doing. And so that you do know what you’re doing, we’ve put together a quick primer on installing a new CPU. If you’re a newbie getting ready to build a new system, or an old pro looking to make sure your technique is the best, read on to find out everything you need to know about properly mounting a CPU."
I think the “pea sized dab” method is a good rule of thumb. Here is a thread with some nice photos in case peas are not something you generally use as a method of measurement.

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