Hardware Exchanging thermal paste?

Clydefrosch

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I recently read that the switch might profit from replacing the factory applied thermal paste and thermal pads to better get rid of the heat, preventing framedrops in some games like Zelda.

Generally sounds logical, cheap paste doesn't take away the heat as effective and whatnot and it also doesn't seem to be very hard to pull off if you have the right screwdrivers either.

I'm sure some have tried and I'd be interested in experiences?
 

gameboy

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funny i was going to do this two days ago, bought the mx-4 and thermal pads but i didnt buy any triwing screwdrivers... i had a pair but they went missing
 

Michael Morsette

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I'm planning on tackling the project next week. Just ordering all the supplies now. What size thermal pads did you use? I was going to buy 1mm pads, did you notices places that need thicker?
 
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gameboy

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I'm planning on tackling the project next week. Just ordering all the supplies now. What size thermal pads did you use? I was going to buy 1mm pads, did you notices places that need thicker?

nvm, i ordered 1mm too but havent gotten to open it yet
 
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Michael Morsette

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Well I plan on using liquid metal on the GPU/CPU, Arctic Silver between the cooper sheet and the heat pipe plate, and Arctic Silver between the heat pipe plate and the metal casing. However there are several other places between the metal casing and the internal components where there are thermal pads that I'm going to replace that I don't believe thermal paste would be appropriate; thus thermal pads. Just wasn't sure what size, I would hate to have bulging.
 

Michael Morsette

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From what I've read (I haven't done mine yet) yes. But you need to be cautious not to put too much, just like in a laptop or PC. A small drop spread thinly around with a fine paint brush or Q-tip. I also am only going to use the liquid metal directly on the GPU/CPU and Arctic Silver and thermal pads everywhere else. There is always risk when using liquid metal, but if used correctly the risk is low.

Mostly I'm doing this because it's fun, I don't see it as nessecary for normal gameplay, however I do plan on eventually overclocking my Switch at which time this mod will definately prove its worth.

I am considering some over modifications to help with airflow too, maybe more vents in the outer case and a fan in the dock.
 
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guily6669

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Well I plan on using liquid metal on the GPU/CPU, Arctic Silver between the cooper sheet and the heat pipe plate, and Arctic Silver between the heat pipe plate and the metal casing. However there are several other places between the metal casing and the internal components where there are thermal pads that I'm going to replace that I don't believe thermal paste would be appropriate; thus thermal pads. Just wasn't sure what size, I would hate to have bulging.
Artic Silver is not liquid metal... Though going to liquid metal which is the best option under the copper sheet won't probably lower much the temps than using AS5 and is more dangerous too...

And yeah, some parts are better with thermal pads...

There is a video on youtube of a heavily modded cooling Switch, he had thick thermal pads and ended up opening again and using thinner thermal pads, I can't remember the video, but you can search and ask him what thickness is the best as he already had to open his console again to change them and he surely will know the answer...

And you can get an idea of cooling mods... He also removed the copper sheet and modified the cooler mounting a bit to direct touch the SOC die with no sheet in the middle. On his video he shows the Zelda forest part and he completely removed all the FPS drop on that part which is the worse of all ZELDA and lags there.

I have a huge syringe of MX-4, but I only have thick thermal pads from a old GPU, I will probably just waste 20gr of thermal compound on my Switch all over the place :)
 
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nekojosh

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I'd be great if someone made a tutorial about this. I'd like to do this but not sure which brands of thermal paste or pads to buy and such. Also having a visual guide of the internals of the switch and where to apply it would be helpful to have before starting a project like this.
Just sayin'. :)
 
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guily6669

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Oh and dont forget to also check his 1st video.


(This one shows the first part, but doesn't explain as good as the other, however there's a missing part on the other video which is here. And it is the thermal pads+thermal paste above the memory chips under the metal cover).
 

guily6669

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I also can't wait for something like that... Eventually someone will probably add it to atmosphere with time. Actually after backup loading that's the number 1 feature I would want, having temps on the main atmosphere menu and on the power menu while in-game (the menu with LCD brightness control).
 

Clydefrosch

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I hear liquid metal doesn't play nice with copper pipes in the long run.
and it's also not the safest in a mobile system due to it leaking and all
 

Viri

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I don't like the idea of using liquid metal in a console that you're going to move around a lot. Same reason why I refuse to put liquid metal in my Laptop.
 

guily6669

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I hear liquid metal doesn't play nice with copper pipes in the long run.
and it's also not the safest in a mobile system due to it leaking and all
Liquid metal actually can only be used with copper, it eats the aluminum and other metals that it touch, if it touches aluminum, you can completely break it with your fingers without even making any strength (it gives you super powers :) ).

So beyond being electrically conductive it destroy a lot of stuff and yeah Switch is portable so you will carry it with you, walking, running, shaking all over the place, I wouldn't also recommend liquid metal on it.

Artic MX-4 is 100% safe and also safer than AS5, easier to apply and it doesn't require any kind of baking while AS5 is said to only get full efficiency after around 200 hours of heat.

Artic MX-4 also claims to last 8 years and I bet it does as I have used MX-2 for 5 years and wasn't that bad after re-pasting with MX-3 and then to MX-4 on my Xbox360.
 
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