ASUS Z71 Thermal Pad Removal To Reduce Temperatures

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ASUS Z71 Thermal Pad Removal To Reduce Temperatures

Post by Apoptosis » Sun Sep 11, 2005 12:27 am

After gaming on the ASUS Z71V notebook for a few hours I noticed more heat buildup than on my previous ASUS M6N notebook. When an ASUS Z71V notebook is purchased the motherboard's Intel 915 northbridge and nVidia Geforce 6600 MXM card already have blue thermal pads installed on them. When I took the heatsink off I noticed that the heatsink was not making good contact on the video card.

Below is an image of the heatsink removed off the chipset and GPU. To remove the HSF simply un-screw the 4 philips head screws and gently lift off the heat sink. A very small amount of force might be required.

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As you can tell in the above image the thermal pads didn't seem to be making good contact and they were removed by simply pulling them off. No residue was left on the surfaces after removal. Below is how the GPU should look after the thermal pad has been removed.

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Now that the Geforce 6600 GPU and the Intel 915 chipset are cleaned up you can install the thermal paste. I'm personally a big fan of Arctic Silver thermal pastes, but since I was out I used Shin-Etsu Thermal Paste. I normally use Shin-Etsu thermal pastes on applications where i don't want to worry about re-applying the paste every few months (like a notebook). My expierence has shown Shin-Etsu to be stable over time. Apply a generous ammount of compound/paste to the surfaces and place the heat sink on and remove it to make sure the surfaces touch.

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After doing a test install we found that the video card was not making contact with the heat sink. If you look closely in the above photo you will notice the GPU didn't make full contact with the base of the HSF. More thermal paste was used and the heatsink was re-secured. Time to work on the processor!

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Start off by removing the two screws that hold down the CPU fan and then un-screw the processor heat pipe. After removal we found that the contact here was fine. (See above image) The thermal compound on the processor is already Shin-Etsu and is hard to clean off. I used ArctiClean by Arctic Silver ($12) to remove all of the compound. Below is an image of the bottom of the heat pipe after using ArctiClean on it. This is by far the easiest way to clean a heat sink base! Apply a very thin coat of thermal compound here. I again used Shin-Etsu.

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Time to run some temperature tests!

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Post by Apoptosis » Sun Sep 11, 2005 12:45 am

The Test System:
- ASUS Z71V Notebook
- Intel 770 Pentium M Processor
- 2 x 512mb Kingston DDR2 533MHz SO-Dimm's
- 80GB 5400RPM Hard Drive
- Intel Pro Wireless 2915 Card

Factory ASUS Thermal Pads @ 800MHz (6x) w/ 0.700 Vcore:

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Shin-Etsu Thermal Paste @ 800MHz (6x) w/ 0.700 Vcore:

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Idle Temperature Changes:
Processor Temperature: 48C to 45C
Video Card Temperature: 65C to 62C
Hard Drive Temperature: 40C to 38C
North Bridge Temperature: 61C to 47C

At idle we saw slight changes in the temperatures, but a 3C is better than no change at all. The overall ASUS Z71 notebook chasis was found to be cooler. Let's take a look at load temps during burn-in and video game benchmarking.

Load Temperatures Changes:
Processor Temperature: 74C to 73C
Video Card Temperature: 94C to 83C

During Prime 95 and Sandra Burn-in loops we got nearly identical CPU temps, but while gaming we noticed a huge 11C drop on the video card. The 11 degree Celcius drop really increased the video cards ability to overclock, but that is for next time.

If you own an ASUS Z71 series laptop, either the ASUS Z71A or the Z71V we highly suggest that you take off the thermal pads and throw them away. Applying thermal paste lowered the temperatures on every temperature monitor found in the chassis. If you are looking to overclock the Geforce 6600 video card then this is a must.

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Post by sbohdan » Sun Sep 11, 2005 5:22 am

nice and comprehensive apop, as allways
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Post by killswitch83 » Sun Sep 11, 2005 11:12 am

That's some really good info there Nate; cheers again on making something that seems on the surface to be difficult actually be easy. I really am a fan of your comprehensive reviews and install procedures. Keep em coming!! :)
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Somethings wrong...

Post by Bun-Bun » Sat Oct 08, 2005 6:05 pm

I tried this today and I started with 67 degrees idle and 100 degrees load (used ATI Tool to get load temp.)

After applying artic silver 5 to the chipset and GPU my load went up to 107 degrees... I couldnt figure it out, I cleaned the gpu off and tried again.
Thought maybe I used too much.

Then I got down to 100 degrees but I still wasnt happy. So I kept adding more thermal paste until now its at ~97 degrees on load and 63-64 on idle.

Why am I not able to get it lower then this? Could the artic silver residue left on the heat sink that I was unable to get completely off from the first attempt be affecting this? would artic clean on the heat sink help me out? And how do i know how much artic silver to put on since the gpu doesnt touch the heatsink?
Thx

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Post by killswitch83 » Sat Oct 08, 2005 6:23 pm

I'm assuming you cleaned the old thermal interface off the heatsink before you started, correct? The thing about AS 5 is that it fills in the microscopic valleys a little too efficiently, so yeah with each time you apply it, you need to apply less, otherwise you'll end up with too much and the interface material will actually inhibit heat dissipation, it'll insulate the heat on the processor, and the heatsink will feel cool to the touch but the processor will be crazy hot. Had it happen once with an AMD processor I installed in a desktop. Not really the resident expert on notebooks, Apop is though. Also, Arctic Clean works well, but I think 91% alcohol is also great too (don't like Acetone because you have to go behind it with alcohol anyways). It's all in preference I guess.

edit: initial comment was not meant offensively, was just making sure 8)
Last edited by killswitch83 on Sat Oct 08, 2005 8:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by -mogwai » Sat Oct 08, 2005 8:36 pm

sweet
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Post by Bun-Bun » Sun Oct 09, 2005 10:50 am

So should I be getting Artic Clean and a new type of thermal paste and cleaning the heatsinks really good and trying again? I noticed in the guide he used shin etsu paste. Does that stuff not suffer from the same problem as artic silver?

Thanks

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Post by killswitch83 » Sun Oct 09, 2005 12:45 pm

starting again could definitely be a good thing, just to make sure everything is nice and clean, as far as going with a different thermal paste, I wouldn't, if you read above, Apop was out of AS, so he went with Shin-Etsu. I think it's a recommended paste to use with notebooks, but AS will provide excellent performance as well, so I would stick with what you have. Just make sure everything is nice and clean, and apply just the right amount of AS, and make sure the heatsink is properly secured. Otherwise, if you get no change, if you choose to then go with Shin Etsu, I'm just saying I usually stick with what I have and know to be good.
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Post by Bun-Bun » Mon Oct 10, 2005 2:07 am

What should I use to clean off the dia of the GPU and memory chips. Right now ive been using Isopropyl but theres still a residue left on the heat sink and die's. I was thinking of getting Artic Clean for the heatsink but is that safe for the die's as well?

Also does Artic Silver breakdown? Ive had the same tube for 2 or 3 years now and ive notice my desktop temps have gone up for no reason after reapplying the AS5 and my laptop gets no gain from it. I'm wondering if my tube has gone bad and I need to buy some new stuff. Where is a good place to buy this kind of stuff?

Thanks

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Post by killswitch83 » Mon Oct 10, 2005 6:22 am

To answer the first question: I would use Arctic Clean on the GPU and VRAM, to get the residue off, because any leftover thermal interface material will hinder performance of the new thermal material. For your second question: I'm not sure about AS actually breaking down, but it depends on how you store it as to how well it works, because if you don't store it on the tip, the silver particles will settle to the back of the tube, and all you'll get is the thermal material, which IMO is almost completely useless without those particles. If you are concerned about your tube of AS, I would go ahead and shell out for a new tube, because you may have caught on to something I didn't realize. Good luck man 8)
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Post by Bun-Bun » Mon Oct 10, 2005 3:24 pm

hmm I didnt know about the store on tip thing
I think that what may be happening cause my desktop temps have gone up and I cant over clock it anymore when I used to be able to get 800 mhz overclock on air.

Ok, so whats a good place to get Artic Clean and AS5? This last tube of AC5 was from http://www.vibecomputers.com but I have been unhappy with them lately.

I finally got it to a point where I can game without my computer locking up so Ill just leave it for now and wait till I get Artic Clean and new AC5 and try again on both my desktop and lappy.

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Post by killswitch83 » Mon Oct 10, 2005 9:56 pm

I would go to http://www.newegg.com; they've always been good to me, though they're a little more pricy than other vendors, they're also more reliable and deliver on average a day sooner than they forecast. They have a high reseller rating from resellerratings.com, and here is their score. There are others, like Performance PC's and zipzoomfly, so it's all in who you trust, that's all. However, under any and all circumstances, stay away from BZBOYZ.com, they did me really wrong once with a mobo I got from them to build an XP rig for a friend (charged for proper packaging when other vendors give it free, not to mention their package prices are ridiculous due to their "add-ons" which are necessary for proper, compatible function (ie: with the standard bundle, it comes with memory they say is "compatible" with the mobo they're putting with it, but it's not; so then you have to dish out extra money for "certified" memory which actually is compatible.....sad). Remember, just go with who you know and trust :)
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Post by Bun-Bun » Thu Oct 13, 2005 7:47 pm

I ordered the artic clean and some new AC5 and am waiting for them to come. But until then does anyone know of a cooling docking stystem for the Z71v? When I go to play WoW laying on the couch or bed the GPU overheats to 116 degrees celsius and restarts on my. This is because the airflow is restricted to the fan on the bottom when it is on a soft surface like my couch or bed. So I was wondering if there was a docking station with fans for it.

Also I was just looking at the pictures in this thread and my heatsink doesnt have part that comes down from the heat sink where hte GPU is. It's just flat. Im wodering if I have an incorrect heat sink and wondering if I can get it replaced... any ideas?

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Post by rhino56 » Sat Oct 15, 2005 11:24 am

i have this exact same laptop and did the same thing. i did notice that gpu thermal pad was very thick and without it the heatsink wont make contact.

there is actually a space between the heatsink and chip because of the stops on it.
the amount needed is pretty much a mountain of it.
which is really worse then having a thick thermal pad.
maybe the thermal conductivity might be better of the compound used then the pad but when it seeps out and you have no contact your temps are gonna soar.


what i did is made a copper shim that fits in there to compensate for the thickness of the pad. it made the contact very tight on both places.
when i get the chance ill measure ithe thickness i made it and let you know.

the cpu is a great idea. doing the video card could cause some serious problems unless you use a shim of the right size.


also i use rubbing alcohol to clean any residue with q tips, it work the same

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Post by Bun-Bun » Sat Oct 15, 2005 1:51 pm

Thats actually a really good idea, ill just get a copper shim made up and lap both sides of it and apply a thin layer of AC5 to it. Awesome.

If you could get me the thickness of yours that would be great. I'll just get the machine shop at school to make me up one.

Thanks :D

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Post by rhino56 » Sat Oct 15, 2005 8:07 pm

Bun-Bun wrote:Thats actually a really good idea, ill just get a copper shim made up and lap both sides of it and apply a thin layer of AC5 to it. Awesome.

If you could get me the thickness of yours that would be great. I'll just get the machine shop at school to make me up one.

Thanks :D
it worked well as it also added more material to release the heat into.
they could really have done so much better with the cooling of the whole thing.
im out of town but when i get back ill measure it, i took great care to get it to fit perfectly. i have a digital caliper so my measure wont have the words about in it. lol

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Post by Bun-Bun » Sat Oct 15, 2005 8:32 pm

Good good, being in CAD/CAM I can appreciate what a couple of thousanths of a inch can do to fits such as this. Thanks a lot :D

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Post by rhino56 » Mon Oct 24, 2005 4:33 am

you want to make it 1mm to .75 thick and the same size as the chip so it covers the whole chip.
also i removed the ridges on the bottom of the heatsink

1mm max thickness, you would probably be good down to .75 because there is a spring action on the pcb that pushes the board up.
but you want it to compress it so its good contact.



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Post by Bun-Bun » Mon Oct 24, 2005 10:12 pm

Awesome thanks.

What did you use to remove the ridges off the heatsink?
And do you know where I could get a lapping kit?

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