Non-conductive thermal paste fills gaps between a CPU’s Integrated Heat Spreader and the processor itself, allowing better heat transfer to help prevent overheating. This ensures optimal performance even under heavy load or overclocking scenarios. The best non-conductive thermal pastes have a high thermal conductivity rating, ensuring that they are able to transfer heat quickly and effectively. Additionally, they need to be able to withstand high temperatures and offer long-lasting action.
Most of the best non-conductive thermal pastes have varying formulations, but the majority are silicone-based and contain metal oxides like zinc or aluminum, which act as gap fillers and as thermal conductors. These are electrically non-conductive and won’t risk damaging any components, unlike liquid metal thermal compounds, which can corrode aluminum surfaces and conduct electricity.
The Kooling Monster KOLD-01 is a great example of this, and it has an electrical resistivity value of 1013 cm and a thermal contact conductivity of 7 x 104 W/m2*degC. It’s also non-curing, non-toxic and has a low viscosity that allows it to be easily spread and absorbed by the thermal interface.
Non-conductive thermal pastes don’t perform as well as exotic TIMs like liquid metal, but they offer more leeway for overclockers and are easier to apply and clean up. They are also cheaper than their metal-based counterparts and will avoid causing any short circuits within your computer should they leak. Another notable option is NZXT’s MX-6, which offers the same versatility as other thermal pastes but at a lower price point and won’t damage any components should it leak. It’s a mildly viscous compound that offers good stability during application and is easy to use.