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The difference of four degrees matters if you want to avoid thermal throttling as much as possible during load. Be it liquid or air cooling. As of now, the testing can be done with an air cooler and the performance is satisfactory.
One tube will cost a premium, but thermal pastes like these will be with you for a long time resulting in multiple applications. At the end of the day, it comes down to the system and the requirement of keeping the temperature low during CPU load. A lot of CPU coolers come with pre-applied thermal pastes or with a syringe-full. Some are great. Some are okay. Some would hold your CPU cooler’s performance back. That said, this is a pretty thick thermal paste and I wouldn’t rely on spreading it. I am sure some have much better spreading skills than mine. I have been using this thermal paste for three-to-five months on a single application, so it should be good enough for longer term use seeing that the thermal paste did not show any signs of dryness. In a typical Mumbai humidity, I would usually change any thermal pastes in six to eight months time. I was skeptical since it does use minute diamond particles. I did not see signs of damage on the IHS. I would like to see similar results in a graphic card, especially something as small as a 16nm FinFET core. A typical hardware enthusiast will look at this thermal paste not just for CPU application.
Noctua NT-H1 is still pretty good. You should note that a Noctua NT-H1 1.4 ml will cost you $7.62, while the MasterGel Maker Nano costs $14.99, approximately twice. An application of MasterGel Nano will last longer, hence less hassle of shutting down, cleaning, re-applying and re-installing heatsink. But if you’re constantly swapping components like a typical hardware reviewer, you may tend to look for a cheaper option and don’t mind a little less cooling performance.
— Hardware BBQ (@HardwareBBQ) June 9, 2016