Featured Articles

Analysts expect ARM to do well next year

Analysts expect ARM to do well next year

British chip designer ARM could cash in on the mobile industry's rush to transition to 64-bit operating systems and hardware.

More...
Huawei and Xiaomi outpace Lenovo, LG in smartphone market

Huawei and Xiaomi outpace Lenovo, LG in smartphone market

Samsung has lost smartphone market share, ending the quarter on a low note and Xiaomi appears to be the big winner.

More...
Intel Broadwell 15W coming to CES

Intel Broadwell 15W coming to CES

It looks like Intel will be showing off its 14nm processors, codenames Broadwell, in a couple of weeks at CES 2015.

More...
Gainward GTX 980 Phantom reviewed

Gainward GTX 980 Phantom reviewed

Today we’ll be taking a closer look at the recently introduced Gainward GTX 980 4GB with the company’s trademark Phantom cooler.

More...
Zotac ZBOX Sphere OI520 barebones vs Sphere Plus review

Zotac ZBOX Sphere OI520 barebones vs Sphere Plus review

Zotac has been in the nettop and mini-PC space for more than four years now and it has managed to carve…

More...
Frontpage Slideshow | Copyright © 2006-2010 orks, a business unit of Nuevvo Webware Ltd.
Friday, 20 April 2007 14:28

Replacement for thermal grease - 3. Performace

Written by test1

Image 

Review: Cool Laboratories Liquid MetalPad

Performance

The pad should liquefy itself at about 60 degrees centigrade. This process is called burn-in, and during it the liquefied film should fill all the gaps and irregularities on the memory chip and cooler surface. After the process, the film should become solid again, but now it should act like glue. This means that it should keep the cooler in place.

We have left the pads to burn-in for four days. Some of the cut parts have finished the process, some haven't even started.

The fastest burn-in was recorded on the X1950s GPU mosfet. It is well known that this chip exceeds temperatures of 120 degrees centigrade, and less that 20 minutes were enough to glue the cooler to the mosfet.

Image

Cooling the mosfet on the X1950 series is the key to successful overclocking.  Some of the smallest chips (voltage regulation) were a big trouble during installation, because the pads on them were extremely small. They would fly away even when you looked at them.

With our GPU we didn't have instant burn-in as with the mosfet. Nevertheless, the process finished in two days.

Image


We turned off the fans to get higher temperatures during the first few days of burn-in process

We were a bit disappointed with the burn-in process on the graphics memory and our CPU. Unfortunately, even now the film looks the same. When we observe it with a magnifying glass, we can't see the anything engraved in the film. Usually, if the thermal pad is applied well, you should be able to see the memory model numbers engraved in it. We’re not sure what went wrong. The memory coolers are polished to make the surface completely flat, so we have ensured that each and every memory chip is in contact with the cooler.

Image


Unfortunately, we had burn-in problems on the RAM.

We had a similar problem with our CPU – the burn-in has slowly started yesterday, four days after we applied the film. Maybe the problem is in the temperature of the CPU. Only 25 degrees in idle and 31 at 100% load are maybe not enough for the pad to burn in quickly enough.

Conclusion

LiquidMetal is a great idea. No more grease on your hands, no more worries about dosing, and rather easy application are the biggest advantages over standard thermal compounds.

But, as we said, there are problems. You have to have a steady hand, and calm nerves. If something goes wrong you can't collect the remains and mix them up again as you could with standard grease. Its main advantage can become its greatest disadvantage for impatient users.

Image

When compared it to a Nanotherm PCM blue (which had only 24 hours for burn-in), we can say that the ThermalPad performs a little bit better. The GPUs temperature was 2 degrees lower when the film was used. This is not a big difference, especially if you know that today the air temperature is 1 degree lower than yesterday when we were testing MetalPad.

Nevertheless, MetalPad is a great product, and we can surely recommend it. The recommended price is about €4,99 (if bought in a one pad package).


CoolLaboratories has a list of resellers here.

 

Big thanks to Innovatek for giving us the LiquiPads, and an EHEIM pump. Without your help, this test wouldn't be possible. 

 

 

(Page 3 of 3)
Last modified on Thursday, 03 May 2007 21:17
blog comments powered by Disqus

 

Facebook activity

Latest Commented Articles

Recent Comments