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Old September 18, 2009, 09:52 AM
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Testing is always relative, you can compare thermal compounds one on one which is commonly done or you can test against absolute limits for a reference point.

Notes On The Limits Of Thermal Grease Performance

The best possible performance for any thermal grease would be 100% heat transfer from the CPU to the heatsink which is impossible. We have measured thermal performance for the best possible case directly soldering the CPU to the heatsink. In this extreme case using a solder joint, the difference between the CPU and the heatsink was 0.5 degrees C.

Based on test results from 391 users among 11 PC Forums and IC tests, IC Diamond Thermal Compound showed 0.8 0.9 C difference between the CPU and heatsink a difference of only 0.4 C compared to the solder joint.

User results showed other thermal compounds ranging from 1.1 C to 4.7 C difference less performance than IC Diamond, as shown on the performance graph, a difference due to the ingredients in the thermal compound used. Twenty years of thermal compound development have reduced the difference between using a solder joint to about 0.4 C. Further development may reduce this difference by a few tenths of a degree.



In our final market analysis before we launched ICD to market, IC tested the most competitive retail compounds and performed the solder test. These tests gave us the confidence to incorporate the giveaway's for forum testing/market introduction as we were confident ICD would transition well into real world user testing and that at best a competitor may match our performance but will never definitively outperform ICD. IC Diamond and has since been proved out so far with 400+ independent tests on 11 forums with experienced users nationally, internationally in a comprehensive sampling of hardware, software and environmental conditions.
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