TIM Review V2 – AMD Installment


Those of you who read Skinnee Labs frequently may be underwhelmed by this review, or at least its results. Four of the five TIMs tested in this review are repeats from last year’s Indigo Xtreme review and a lot of this review, and its results, will be similar to the Indigo Xtreme review from 2009. Indigo Xtreme retains its position as the best TIM and Shin-Etsu X23-7783D remains the best paste I’ve tested.

But this part of the TIM Review 2010 was never meant to shake the world, introduce a great new TIM, or anything like that. It’s simply an extension of last year’s TIM tests, but on an AMD processor. There’s also a series of improvements to both the testbed and the procedure; I’m now using VaporBench v3 (more on this in another write-up), 7 mounts per TIM (at 12 hours per mount!), and a few tweaks to the data analysis. In a lot of ways, it’s a bit of a preface to the upcoming TIM Review 2010 Part 2, which will return to an Intel CPU and include approximately 20 TIMs. I really want to leave no stone unturned in the next part of this TIM Review, but in order to do that, I need to do a lot pretesting with test procedure–this doubles as both a review and pretesting for the second part of this review.

The only change in TIMs tested was an addition of low-cost, builder-oriented Cooler Master IceFusion in exchange for IC Diamond. In addition to using an AMD 1055T, I also switched CPU blocks to a Koolance CPU-360. The CPU-360 has the best AMD mounting system on the market and is equally great on Intel. Additionally, it’s nickel plated, so it should be more resistant to the diffusion issues with the Coolaboratory TIMs in Part 2 of the TIM Review. The TIMs tested in this review are Arctic Cooling MX-2, Arctic Silver 5, Indigo Xtreme, Shin-Etsu X23-7783D, and Cooler Master IceFusion.

In many ways, this test is overdue. Shortly after I completed the LGA1366 Indigo Xtreme review, Enerdyne approached me and asked me to test and review their new AMD version. I obliged, but because of a scheduling and hardware juggle, things weren’t able to come together until recently. I’d like to sincerely thank them for their patience as well as providing the Indigo Xtreme samples for this review.

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