ARCTIC MX-5 thermal paste - first new paste in over a decade

Posted on Monday, Mar 15 2021 @ 15:31 CET by Thomas De Maesschalck
I can't remember the last time I wrote about a new thermal paste product. It's not a very glamorous product category so few firms these days are really marketing new products. ARCTIC is still going strong though -- the firm just announced its MX-5 compound. Stores already started listing this compound a couple of months ago, so the news isn't a total surprise.

Carbon microparticles in the MX-5 -- just like the MX-4

Like its predecessor, the new MX-5 thermal paste does not conduct electricity but it has a lower viscosity than the MX-4. This should make it easier to spread. ARCTIC is using carbon microparticles as a filler in its new paste, another similarity with the MX-4. The latter launched in 2010, the MX-5 is the firm's first new paste in over a decade.

So how is the MX-5 different versus the MX-4?

Both MX-4 and MX-5 are rated at eight years of durability. The firm didn't share a k-value but we do have the following specifications.

MX-5 specs:
  • Viscosity 550 poise
  • Density 3.2 g/cm³
  • Continuous Use Temperature -40~180°c
  • Volume Resistivity 1.9 X 10^13 Ohm-cm
  • Breakdown Voltage 250 V/mil
MX-4 specs:
  • Viscosity 870 poise
  • Density 2.50 g/cm³
  • Volume Resistivity 3.8 X 10^13 Ohm-cm
ARCTIC, one of the leading manufacturers of low-noise PC coolers and components, officially launches its MX-5 thermal paste today. The newly developed, high-performance paste comes with an ideal set of thermal properties, guaranteeing reliable heat dissipation over long periods of time. ARCTIC MX-5 is available now in variants ranging from 2 to 50 grams, with and without spatula.

Like all thermal pastes from ARCTIC, MX-5 is completely metal-free. Because MX-5 is neither conductive nor capacitive, it is particularly safe to use: the possibility of short circuits, corrosion damage or discharges is eliminated.

Regardless of the application method, applying MX-5 is very easy thanks to its low viscosity. The paste can be evenly distributed across the CPU in an extremely thin film via contact pressure from the heat sink. Combined with high thermal conductivity, this results in very low thermal resistance, which can contribute to improved service life and processor performance.

MX-5 uses carbon microparticles as a filler to smooth out small imperfections on heatsinks and heatspreaders, improving heat transfer from the component to the heat sink. It is suitable for use on all CPUs and GPUs, whether they are in PCs, laptops or consoles. MX-5 is also recommended for integrated circuits with high waste heat and for power semiconductor devices.
ARCTIC sells MX-5 in 2g to 50g variants, with and without spatula. You can get it via the ARCTIC webshop and Amazon. Pricing starts at 7.49EUR.

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About the Author

Thomas De Maesschalck

Thomas has been messing with computer since early childhood and firmly believes the Internet is the best thing since sliced bread. Enjoys playing with new tech, is fascinated by science, and passionate about financial markets. When not behind a computer, he can be found with running shoes on or lifting heavy weights in the weight room.

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