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Question For PC Builders

Rasczak

Distinguished Member
I am about to embark on my first significant self-upgrade to my PC - I am upgrading motherboard, graphics card, HDDs etc but am keeping my existing AMD 64 3700 CPU (Socket 754). (I intend to see how dual core develops and then upgrade motherboard/CPU next year when I adopt Vista).

My question is as I'm simply moving my CPU from one motherboard to another can I just move the whole stack (CPU, Heatsink & Fan) over together or do I need to remove the fan/heatsink, clean down any thermal paste and reapply? Obviously I am keen to do the former as it's less work and the application of thermal paste is the one thing I am not particularly confident with. :rolleyes: For all I know though the whole assembly could be fused together/fall apart when I lift it off. What should I expect?

Finally, in the event I do need thermal paste, can I pick this up at PC World? I am keen to start building my PC this weekend (before I chicken out!).
 

Andy98765

Distinguished Member
To move the CPU and Fan it is not a one peice operation if you manage to release the CPU lever with the Heatsink in place then you have really achieved something, yes you do need Thermal paste and yes PC World normally have it. Why are you changing the motherboard, got an issue with it.
 

Rasczak

Distinguished Member
yes you do need Thermal paste and yes PC World normally have it.
Cheers for the reply - that's what I thought would be the case. :rolleyes: :rolleyes: :rolleyes: Any hints or tips for the application of thermal paste? What sort of thickness should I be looking at? And does it need to cover the whole CPU/Heatsink surface area? Do I understand correctly that I need to clean the CPU and the heatsink thoroughly before apply new paste?

Why are you changing the motherboard, got an issue with it.
Just a lack of planning on my part. My current Graphics card is a AGP Geforce 6800 Ultra which is a little long in the tooth now and struggles to power my new monitor in the latest games. However it is effectively one of the last AGP cards. Accordingly I am updating the motherboard to a PCI-E one and adding a new graphics card plus other little changes that I have wanted to do for awhile (DVB-T, RAID controller, extra HDDs, install MCE).

I'll replace the motherboard again and install a new CPU when Vista arrives (well 12 months after to allow niggling issues to be resolved) - by that time the full performance of the new Intel chips should be realised. And I'll upgrade the graphics card when games start supporting DX10.

A slight waste of cash but I plan to make extensive use of my PC between now and Xmas so it is worth it.
 

Badger0-0

Distinguished Member
Thermal paste is no big deal.
Just make sure you cover both surfaces.
If you put too much on, it will just squidge out, then you wipe any excess off.

And no, not PCWorld, why pay triple the price (guess), when you can go to Maplins?

Just go slow and careful and you'll be fine.
You could always come and see me for £100 an hour :rotfl:
 

Rasczak

Distinguished Member
And no, not PCWorld, why pay triple the price (guess), when you can go to Maplins?
Didn't think of Maplins! Thanks :thumbsup: These days I tend to try and get everything from Ebuyer or Dabs - and then rush down to PC World for all the stuff I have forgotten! :rolleyes:
 

dan1979

Prominent Member
I use good old tape head cleaner.

As for the amount of thermal paste, get a credit card or similar and spread a thin layer over the core.

You can move the whole stack of CPU/HSF/mobo out at once but it's not advisable.
 

Jowl

Established Member
dan1979 said:
As for the amount of thermal paste, get a credit card or similar and spread a thin layer over the core.


Good tip, that.

Remember: too much paste can be worse than none at all!
 

Uridium

Distinguished Member
dan1979 said:
I use good old tape head cleaner.

As for the amount of thermal paste, get a credit card or similar and spread a thin layer over the core.

You can move the whole stack of CPU/HSF/mobo out at once but it's not advisable.

Applicable to most older CPU's but on Athlon64's and P4's it's generally recommended to pop just a drop about the size of a grain of rice onto the centre of the CPU Die and let the Heatsynch spread the paste

http://www.arcticsilver.com/arctic_silver_instructions.htm
 

Rasczak

Distinguished Member
paste will give cooler temps IMO.
Will this effect general non-overclocked operations? Or is it just applicable to those who wish to overclock? CPU overclocking is probably a little beyond me at present.
 

Badger0-0

Distinguished Member
Well yes, if you're after the ultimate overclocking state, I'd recommend Arctic Silver :smashin:

But for everyday stuff, there's no need.

Maplins cheap stuff will do fine, no worries.

Personally, I wouldn't touch thermal pads, I go with what I know works 100% :smashin:

Whatever floats your boat, I guess.
 

Rasczak

Distinguished Member
Many thanks for all the replies guys :thumbsup:

Purchased some thermal paste and remover at Maplins. Assuming the mothebroard/graphics card comes tomorrow as planned I will upgrade then!
 

Rasczak

Distinguished Member
So can I just clarrify that I place a small amount of thermal paste onto the centre of the CPU but don't apply any to the Heatsink? The paste will then be spread into place by the Heatsink being pushed down into place?
 

Rasczak

Distinguished Member
Thanks for all the advice/assistance guys - I successfully replaced my motherboard yesterday including switching my CPU from the old PC. :smashin: The whole thermal paste issue turned out to be really easy in the end as so many of you said! :thumbsup:
 

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