Solved Thermal compound recommendations for H115i AIO liquid cooler

April 3, 2020 at 14:28:52
Specs: Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit, i7-3770K @ 3.9GHz | 16GB DDR3 2400MHz
Hey all. I've had my Corsair H115i for a few years now and it has performed admirably. I recently got my hands on a new motherboard and will be swapping parts over soon.

I was wondering if I could get some recommendations on what thermal compound is best for AIO liquid coolers with an Intel CPU. I've seen posts on other forums recommending against metal-based pastes, and a lot of people hinting at MX-2. I've just been using the stock compound that was pre-applied, and I typically use Arctic Silver 5 on air coolers for other builds, but I have little experience with what compounds would be best for an AIO like the H115i so I'm curious to see what you've got for me.

Thanks in advance!

MSI B75MA-P45
Intel Core i7-3770K 3.9GHz
Corsair H115i CPU cooler
16GB DDR3 2400MHz
EVGA GeForce GTX 1070 8GB
Samsung 840 EVO 120GB SSD (Windows 7 Ultimate)
Toshiba 2TB


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#1
April 4, 2020 at 06:10:37
✔ Best Answer
There's isn't a huge difference between thermal pastes regardless of brand & there's virtually no difference between AS5 & MX2. See the following chart: https://cdn.mos.cms.futurecdn.net/y...

Are you going to swap all the existing hardware (CPU, RAM, GPU, etc) to the new board? You didn't post the make/model of the new board, but what are you expecting to gain?


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#2
April 4, 2020 at 08:49:37
@riider

The new board is an MSI Z77A-G45. I'll be gaining overclocking support and PCI-E x16 slots for SLI expansion.

In that case, I'll probably go for MX-2/MX-4. As long as I've got you, though, mind if I ask what application method you'd recommend for a 3770K? For air coolers I typically go with a pea sized amount and let it spread out via the clamping pressure of the cooler, but not sure if there's a big difference for liquid AIO coolers.

MSI B75MA-P45
Intel Core i7-3770K 3.9GHz
Corsair H115i CPU cooler
16GB DDR3 2400MHz
EVGA GeForce GTX 1070 8GB
Samsung 840 EVO 120GB SSD (Windows 7 Ultimate)
Toshiba 2TB


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#3
April 4, 2020 at 10:13:19
I don't use liquid cooling & probably never will. IMO, it's an unnecessary added expense, but I don't think the paste application is any different - air vs liquid. For your CPU, the "vertical line" method is recommended, not the "middle dot". This pic shows why: https://forum.corsair.com/forums/at...

BTW, I just looked at the specs for your boards. Does the Z77A have the right CPU socket?
https://us.msi.com/Motherboard/Z77A...
https://www.msi.com/Motherboard/B75...
https://ark.intel.com/content/www/u...

message edited by riider


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#4
April 4, 2020 at 10:39:41
@riider

Perfect, thanks for the tips! Got the paste ordered so it's a waiting game now.

Edit: Thought my replacement board was the gaming variant of the Z77A-G45, but it isn't. Looks like there's two variants of the board, one for 1155 and one for 2011. Below is my board which is 1155.

A bit weird because this is the first time I've seen the 2011 one, but I know mine is 1155 for sure as I used another Ivy Bridge 1155 socket CPU to test it.

https://www.msi.com/Motherboard/Z77...

MSI B75MA-P45
Intel Core i7-3770K 3.9GHz
Corsair H115i CPU cooler
16GB DDR3 2400MHz
EVGA GeForce GTX 1070 8GB
Samsung 840 EVO 120GB SSD (Windows 7 Ultimate)
Toshiba 2TB

message edited by Comguy


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