Skip to main content

Thermaltake reinvents how to apply thermal paste to CPUs

(Image credit: Thermaltake)

Thermaltake is taking the art of applying thermal paste to a CPU and turning it into a paint-by-numbers game, just with a single number for gray. Oh, and a honeycomb template, so as you're going all Van Gogh on your processor, you don't spill the paste over the side and onto your motherboard.

Does the art of applying thermal paste really need reinventing, though? What's wrong with just squirting a pea-sized amount of paste onto your CPU, and then squishing it with the heatsink, which spreads it evenly by abiding by the laws of physics (the dot method)?

Well, nothing—that's still a valid and effective way of applying thermal compound. It's just not the only way, and in addition to other methods that already exist, Thermaltake has found a new way.

Sort of new, anyway. The "all-in-one application" kit it is including with its new TG30 and TG50 compounds is essentially a hybrid take on the dot method, and the alternative approach of spreading an even coat across the entire CPU surface with a plastic card, like an old credit card.

It's a simple application—you lay the honeycomb stencil on top of your CPU, apply a gob of TG30 or TG50, then use the included plastic spatula to spread it around. When you lift off the stencil, you're left with a honeycomb pattern of paste. And a whole bunch of excess paste on the stencil.

(Image credit: Thermaltake)
Your next upgrade

(Image credit: Future)

Best CPU for gaming: the top chips from Intel and AMD
Best graphics card: your perfect pixel-pusher awaits
Best SSD for gaming: get into the game ahead of the rest

The end result is that when you install your heatsink—an air cooler or a liquid cooling block—the paste is spread evenly over the surface as shown in the image above. It looks like an easy process, and an effective one.

"The honeycomb stencil creates an easier way to apply your thermal compound for a neat and well-covered surface which fits all CPUs," Thermaltake explains.

As for the pastes, Thermaltake does not go into a lot of detail, saying they are "premium" thermal compounds containing "diamond powder." Thermaltake rates the thermal conductivity of the TG30 as 4.5 W/m-k (watts per meter-Kelvin) and the TG50 as 8 W/m-k (higher values are better). Both come in 4G syringes.

I'm not seeing these pastes at any online stores yet, but according to our friends at Tom's Hardware, the TG30 goes for $8.99 and the TG50 goes for $11.99.

Paul has been playing PC games and raking his knuckles on computer hardware since the Commodore 64. He does not have any tattoos, but thinks it would be cool to get one that reads LOAD"*",8,1. In his off time, he rides motorcycles and wrestles alligators (only one of those is true).