Methodology and Results
TweakTown uses a different method for testing CPU heatsinks which allows for an even playing field across all product tests. We feel that by using the same ambient temperature and strict lab-like testing procedures we are able to accurately compare one product to another. More information on our testing procedure can be found in the T.E.C.C. article here.
With the testing methodology out of the way, I can show you a few shots done for example purposes. I tried various methods of application to each of the TIMs in the competition and benched them all with these various methods and took the best result of the three runs of testing. The images you are about to see are sample photos taken by placing the CPU in a motherboard and clamping the cooler into place. Once I allowed it to settle into place, the cooler was removed and you will soon see the results of each method.
With a bit more practice and a better feel for the spreader, it is fairly easy to get a good result of a thin even layer on the desired heat source. This is the preferred application method from GELID and you will soon see why.
The spread of GC-2 is even and has great coverage of the HIS. This in turn makes great contact between your heat source and the heatsink.
Then the next application method was the "grain of rice in the center" method. We have all used this method and with varying results with various coolers.
The grain of rice method is flawed with HDT style coolers. The compound gets taken up by the gaps in the heatsink base and doesn't allow the compound to spread over the entire IHS.
Here is my personal preferred method of applying thermal compound. It is an adaptation of the grain of rice method, which I have seen fail on my Xigmatek coolers. The addition of the TIM on the outer corners goes a long way for HDT coolers, where the flat based coolers do tend to work better with less.
With my personal method you can see I get just about equal coverage to the IHS as the spreading out of the compound creates. Again, this is more for the coolers with exposed heatpipes in their bases.
The results are of no surprise to me, as I have had a sneak peak at it weeks ago. As I mentioned, each application was tried on our T.E.C.C, test rig and I took the lowest round of test scores and used them in the list. Some compounds did better with globs, while some did better with spreading them, but as you can see, even with three rounds a piece GELIDs GC-2 Premium Thermal Compound is top of the charts.