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Antec Formula 6 Nano Diamond Thermal Compound Review



/ 6 years ago

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Good and well applied thermal paste is certainly a must for every avid overclocker. It is also a necessity if you like to have a quiet PC. Simply put, without thermal paste your CPU Cooler won’t do much and as such will be working as hard as it can and your CPU temperature will stick rocket. Here at eTeknix we are trying to make your lives easier by letting you know which products are better and thermal compounds are today’s item on the agenda. If you’ve recently seen the price of thermal compounds you might well be quite surprised as it is certainly not cheap with most manufacturers claiming you’re paying for quality and who are you to argue when you probably have nothing to compare it with.

Our aim of today is to test a new thermal compound and see how it fares against a more favoured adversary. Then we will be able to give you an informed decision on which is better and if it is worth your money to buy a more expensive brand or not.

If you are not too familiar with thermal compounds here is a short summary of their job – be warned there is some science!

Thermal Compound Objective: To aid the thermal heat transfer between the CPU heat spreader and the CPU coolers’ heatsink by drawing the two items into very close contact and making the gap as conductive as possible.

You might however say, why not just have the CPU in direct contact with the heatsink and this might sound like a good idea, but the transfer of heat is a very interesting topic. Heat can be transferred within a metal very easily due to the close contact of the atoms – we are talking 0.23nm between atoms. Then when there is what we consider a small gap between two touching surfaces there is a gap which is in the order of 100,000 times larger than that of the atom spacing. This is a lot and as such heat does not transfer over such a large gap. Instead we fill that gap with as much thermal compound as possible with the highest thermal conductivity as possible. Simples!

In the words of Antec themselves:

Antec’s Formula 6 thermal compound protects your CPU even when your rig is running on all cylinders. Since little of the CPU’s surface actually touches the heat sink, you need a solution that isolates and facilitates the transfer of heat. Formula 6’s nano diamond particles minimize the distance between heat-conductive compounds and gladly take on the highest demanding CPU, optimally performing between -30°C and 250°C. To keep your system cool and your CPU functioning comfortably, pick up Antec’s Formula 6 for a diamond-caliber solution.

We will be taking a look at the Antec Formula 6 Nano Diamond Thermal Compound.

Specifications
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  • Diamond particles measuring 0.0000015 cm rated at 5.3 w/mK
  • Extended -30°C to 250°C stable temperature range ideal for performance cooling
  • Lighter, easier to spread stable composition won’t crack or dry out
  • Quantity: 4 g
  • Specific gravity: 2.2 g/cm3

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  • ASadhra

    Nice, informative review 😉

  • Antec Support

    Great read. Thanks for the review. The spreader alone is already worth a fortune! 🙂

  • SJTelford

    Antec, are you surprised by my results though? I think I was surprised that Antec Formula 6 was only just notching ahead of the MX-2 by a matter of a degree or so as I expected it to outperform the MX-2 more considerably.Would love to know your thoughts!Simon

  • Antec Support

    Hey Simon! To answer your question first, we were not too surprised by your results. As you already noted, a certain burn-in phase is required with Antec Formula 6 and 7 thermal pastes to achieve great results. Although this is the case with most other thermal pastes, one main advantage of our pastes is that they don’t have those super dry and sticky characteristics. This is because of the small size of diamond particles, which makes conductivity so much better compared to any other thermal paste using different materials. Formula 6 and 7 provide an excellent basis for maintaining a good performance for a very long period of time. Especially when it comes to overclocking, Formula 6 and 7 will really shine!P.S. Oh, and do not forget about the spatula! 😀

  • SJTelford

    Antec Support;16570 wrote: Hey Simon! To answer your question first, we were not too surprised by your results. As you already noted, a certain burn-in phase is required with Antec Formula 6 and 7 thermal pastes to achieve great results. Although this is the case with most other thermal pastes, one main advantage of our pastes is that they don’t have those super dry and sticky characteristics. This is because of the small size of diamond particles, which makes conductivity so much better compared to any other thermal paste using different materials. Formula 6 and 7 provide an excellent basis for maintaining a good performance for a very long period of time. Especially when it comes to overclocking, Formula 6 and 7 will really shine!P.S. Oh, and do not forget about the spatula! 😀

    You picked up on some good points and I'm glad I did get characteristic results, the burn-in phase is certainly needed but it is a tad of a negative for those of us reviewing CPU Coolers – we really want to be able to apply it and for it to work well instantly – which is why I always like the Arctic MX-2 and such like. Formula 6 is nearly 3* the price of Arctic MX-2 though and I am still debating whether it is really worth it (You can't quite claim the spatula is worth £4 no?)! For now however, I will be using Formula 6 for my rig 🙂 (Until i run out very shortly….)You certainly have the durability part cracked, but still waiting for a truly magnificent performance to put you streaks ahead of the competition! 🙂 Simonp.s. I do love the spatula but some people won't use it at all as they will use the heatsink to 'spread it out' a bit.

  • Antec Support

    SJTelford;16595 wrote: You picked up on some good points and I'm glad I did get characteristic results, the burn-in phase is certainly needed but it is a tad of a negative for those of us reviewing CPU Coolers – we really want to be able to apply it and for it to work well instantly – which is why I always like the Arctic MX-2 and such like. Formula 6 is nearly 3* the price of Arctic MX-2 though and I am still debating whether it is really worth it (You can't quite claim the spatula is worth £4 no?)! For now however, I will be using Formula 6 for my rig 🙂 (Until i run out very shortly….)You certainly have the durability part cracked, but still waiting for a truly magnificent performance to put you streaks ahead of the competition! 🙂 Simonp.s. I do love the spatula but some people won't use it at all as they will use the heatsink to 'spread it out' a bit.

    You are right Simon, Antec Formula 6 and 7 are probably not the best basis for testing CPU Coolers, because you will never achieve the wanted results in a short period of time that is required to test many coolers. It is simply not made with that in mind. But please monitor the performance with your rig, and you will certainly not be disappointed by the results. If you can, you should try to give it a go on GPUs as well. Let us know how it goes.The higher price in comparison to other thermal pastes out there might or might not be worth it. That is something that each and everyone of us needs to reconsider, but I promise to all of you, you will not regret it when it comes to choose a great performing product.P.S. I suggest everyone to apply the thermal paste in a thin even layer instead of letting it being spread by the pressure of the cooler alone.