Most of us know about the goo interface between hot processors and cooling systems. Considering how car companies sell you something new with a set of probably round and probably rubber tires with little grip and short lifespan, is there any reason to believe an electronics maker wont do the same with its products? The bare minimum to get things working? We can do better on the consumer end. A great thermal paste is a set of aftermarket performance tires for your computer.
Arctic Silver 5 used to be my go to. It took 200 hours to settle in and then needed a new layer after two years. Enthusiast grade stuff needs maintenance and today it’s considered mid-grade.
I’m using the pictured MX-4. It is carbon nanotube based, has eight years between applications, takes zero hours to set up, and is within 3 degrees of todays best Kryonaut stuff out there, which still needs a new layer every eighteen months of hard use. I think the mx 4 is the best deal out there. I can’t imagine how much cooler a notebook would run with this stuff. That eight years thing sold me on it. I always hated re-applying paste.
My 1070 folding card is friggin’ silent now. It sits at 76 degrees, fans spinning 42%.. The last time I put new paste on it was two years ago, some average to decent Gelid OC paste. It failed in the last month with my card fans making lots of noise, temps 83.
So consider your paste options! Shop around. For me It’s been the difference in peaceful tech co-existence or fans hitting that one frequency where you just can’t stand it anymore.