- Introduction, Packaging and Specifications
- Test Setup and Observations
- Online Purchase Links
- View All
Disclosure: This review unit is supplied by Coolermaster.
It’s no surprise that Cooler Master is reinvigorating itself by introducing the Maker series. Previously, we reviewed their Master Case 5 which is aimed towards those who would like to expand their needs with the add-ons that they sell separately (and for modding).
We have many tried and tested thermal compounds in the market for mainstream and high-performance systems. Artic Cooling MX2 was the default choice for many users until multiple PC cooling manufacturing companies starting making thermal pastes. There is one company that makes CPU coolers and cases, but not a thermal paste. No prize for guessing which one it is.
Coolermaster’s experience with thermal compounds isn’t new, but this is probably the first aimed towards high-performance CPUs and GPUs. Therefore, it should not be of any surprise that the MasterGel Maker Nano is a thermal paste is aimed towards enthusiasts and overclockers to be used for CPUs, GPUs and chipsets. Like many conventional thermal compounds, this one is non-electrical conductive and does not require any curing, but it’s also made for long term use.
As Coolermaster says:
The Mastergel Maker Is developed for users needing the best thermal conductivity for high-performance CPUs, GPUs or even chipsets. The non-curing and non-electrical conductive traits help avoid any short-circuiting and provides protection and performance for long-term use.
The High-Tech nano diamond particles allow the MasterGel Maker to be extremely lightweight and easy to spread or remove while avoiding auto-oxidation or erosion over time.
What you should know is that Coolermaster is using something that they call it as high-tech nano-diamond particles. This should help to provide better conductivity with lesser gaps. You get a grease cleaner, a scraper to spread the thermal compound and obviously the thermal compound in a syringe. It contains 15ml so that’s plenty of applications for a single system user. The contents come in a blister packaging.
What separates one good thermal compound from the other is high thermal conductivity, low thermal resistance and preferably non-electrical conductive. It is also important that the compound should not oxidise the CPU/GPU/chipsets. Long lifespan is also appreciated especially for PC users in closed conditions.
|Thermal Conductivity (W/m-K)||11|
|Specific Gravity (g/cm3)(25°C)||2.6|
|Net Weight (g)||4|
The Mastergel maker has a specific gravity of 2.6 g/cm³ while the Artic MX2 is 3.96 g/cm³ and Noctua NT-H1 is 2.49 g/cm³.
Usually, I use a pea method for processors with smaller IHS such as the i7 4790K. For larger size IHS such as the i7-5960X, I prefer the three thin line method. I never needed to spread the thermal paste around, though the MX2 is very ‘fluid’ followed by the NT-H1. I prefer letting the thermal compound spread itself by the CPU heatsink. This way, the compound has a much better chance of even spread and filling the gaps between them. I’ve tried spreading thermal compounds at one point but getting them evenly spread is a task.
Spreading Mastergel maker Nano using the scrapper turned out to be a waste of time. The thermal compound is less fluidic and more sticky. This resulted in a horribly uneven spread and also some of the thermal paste stays on the scrapper. I decided to use the tried-and-tested pea, cross or a line method.
The test setup is as follows and done in closed case condition.
The case’s ambient temperature is 37 degrees celsius. OCCT was used for 45 minutes and then left on idle for 20 minutes. Idle and load temperatures of ‘Core #3″ is noted down from HWiNFO64. CPU_Fan speed is set to full. Noctua NH-C14S uses 1x Noctua NF-A14 PWM fan which has a maximum rotational speed of 1,500 RPM.
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