Arctic Silver Ceramique
review by David, 17 August 2003

Introduction

Imagine you just bought a nice new CPU for your system-to-be. High performance CPUs of today generate a ton of heat, figuratively speaking. The more heat there is, the more likely your CPU is to not function at its intended speed, whether the speed the manufacturer intended it to run, or the speed the user intends the processor to run at. Thus, a shiny new heatsink is purchased along with that CPU. In addition, the computer enthusiast of today will almost certainly get some quality thermal paste to go along with the heatsink. The choice of thermal paste in the market is rather wide. There is the usual plain white goop, copper-based pastes, silver based pastes, and many more, costing a wide variety of prices.

We take a look at a relatively new entry into the thermal paste market from Arctic Silver Inc; Ceramique.

Ceramique?

Heres some quick information about the compound.

The high-density, ceramic-based thermal compound specifically designed for modern high-power CPUs and high-performance heatsinks or water-cooling solutions.

Made with micronized aluminum oxide, boron nitride and zinc oxide.
Ceramique uses a high-density layered composite of five unique shapes of thermally conductive aluminum oxide, boron nitride and zinc oxide sub-micron particles to maximize particle-to-particle contact area and thermal transfer.

This exclusive combination provides performance exceeding most metal based compounds.

  • Average particle size: 0.38 microns <0.000015 inch ( 67 particles lined up in a row equal 1/1000th of an inch. )

Controlled triple phase viscosity.

  • Ceramique does not contain any silicone.
  • The suspension fluid is a proprietary mixture of advanced polysynthetic oils that provide superior performance and long-term stability.
  • During the system's initial use, the heat from the CPU lowers the viscosity of the compound to enhance the filling of the microscopic valleys and ensure a minimum bond line between the heatsink and the CPU core. Then the compound thickens slightly over the next 100 to 300 hours of use to its final consistency designed for long-term stability.
  • (This should not be confused with conventional phase change pads that are pre-attached to many heatsinks. Those pads melt each time they get hot then re-solidify when they cool. The viscosity changes that Ceramique goes through are much more subtle and ultimately much more effective.)

Excellent Stability - Ceramique is engineered to not separate, run, migrate, or bleed.

Electrical Insulator - Ceramique does not contain any metal or other electrically conductive materials. It is a pure electrical insulator, neither electrically conductive nor capacitive.

Wide Temperature Limits - Peak: 40C to >180C, Long-Term: 40C to 140C

Industry Leading Performance - 2 to 10 degrees centigrade lower CPU full load core temperatures than standard thermal compounds or thermal pads. When measured with a calibrated thermal diode imbedded in the CPU core.

Lets take a closer look at the contents.

A Closer Look >>