I'm a computer professional with over two decades experience, so I'm no newbie. But I have a question that sounds very newbie-ish: What's the best method for applying heat sink compound? I've read all the online "how to's" and tried various methods, but my results never seem to be very good (temps in the mid 40's) and I fear damaging (another) processor (I once destroyed an old Athlon 1800+ by slathering on a layer of grease to the entire surface of the heatsink.) Most "how to's" seem to agree on "thinly spreading a half-a-grain-of-rice sized drop of compound applied to the cpu die". But methods vary from "use a razor blade" to "dab with a gloved finger" (I'm using Artic Silver 5). And that amount varies well based on certain situations. My heatsink is solid copper, but when I wipe it clean, I can feel it is not perfectly smooth, with microscopic ridges rubbing across my finger. So it's difficult to know exactly how much compound I need... the core is smooth (suggesting I need little), but the sink, while still relatively smooth, in fact isn't. Too much compound can be as bad as too little. So any advice from other experienced builders would be appreciated. Thanks.