MSI MPG Z690 "4F" Error, no display, no boot

njvrud157102dd

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Apr 12, 2022
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I'm officially at my wit's end. I have a ticket out with MSI's tech support, but guessing the board just has to be shipped back and I have to start all over. I tried to update the BIOS this morning to 7D30v14...but after a couple restarts (which I was prepared for), my LCD never came back on. Since this has been a persistent issue, and usually a couple restarts fixes that issue, I waited a good ~30 min and then hi the "restart" button. What has followed can only be described as pure rage as my system will no longer boot and will not display anything, via the GPU or the onboard video adapter. My motherboard's "CPU" LED is red, and it will only boot to a "4F" error code and never get past it - no matter what I've tried, and here's the list of what I've done:
  1. -Restarted and hard-shut off (let's say I've done this ~30x at this point)
  2. -Removed the power and cleared CMOS via the jumper (JBAT1)
  3. -Unplugged my RAM (first both sticks, then one at a time, then switched places)
  4. -Unplugged all SATA drives and left the M.2
  5. -Unplugged my GPU and plugged it back in
  6. -Tried the onboard display adapter (HDMI and DP) and the GPU.
  7. -Also tried different cables, and a different LCD just to be sure
  8. -Removed the water block and CPU and checked for bent pins (none that I could see)
  9. - I then reseated the CPU and applied new Arctic 5 paste and put the block back on
  10. - Finally, I removed the Mobo, unplugged everything, and disassembled the heatsinks covering the CMOS battery...and removed the battery for ~1 minute
All to no avail. Still same error code. Still no display so I can't troubleshoot anything "visually" because nothing comes up. Also now my keyboard won't light up (but my mouse does?), so there's some serious gremlins in this board. Any advice would certainly be appreciated, but I think I've covered every single base I can think of.

Board: MSI MPG Z690 Gaming Pro Carbon Wifi
CPU: Intel I7-12700K
RAM: G.SKILL Trident Z5 RGB Series 32GB (2 x 16GB) DDR5 5600
Cooler: Enermax Aquafusion 240 RGB
PSU: EVGA Gold Supernova 850 GA
GPU: EVGA GeForce RTX 3080ti
SSD: Samsung 980 Pro M.2
OS is Win10 Pro, but no idea what build (and can't get to anything to see it anyway)

I have other WD HDDs too, but as I said, the SATA drives are unplugged at the moment. What do I do from here other than wait for MSI to tell me their mobo died after trying to get a new BIOS version updated?
 

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citay

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So wait a second, you have tried all of that, but not the Flash BIOS Button? It's designed to recover from a scenario exactly like that.
The Flash BIOS Button will force-flash the BIOS to whatever version you want, no matter the problem with the BIOS, CPU, RAM or GPU.

1. Download the previous BIOS file for your board and extract it.
2. Rename the BIOS file to MSI.ROM, and save it to the root of your USB flash drive / USB stick (not in a subfolder). FAT32 formatting is a must for the USB flash drive.
3. Plug the USB flash drive that contains the MSI.ROM file into the Flash BIOS Port on the rear I/O panel.
4. With the PC off, press the Flash BIOS Button, and the LED starts flashing for about 5-6 minutes.

You need to find a USB stick / pen drive that the board likes. It needs to flash for about 5-6 minutes and then it will reboot.
Anything drastically different (under a minute of flashing, or over 10 minutes of flashing) and the flashing didn't work.
The Flash BIOS Button method is very picky about the USB sticks sometimes. In fact, the old and cheap USB sticks with small capacity seem to work the best for that method, read here or here.

 

njvrud157102dd

New member
Joined
Apr 12, 2022
Messages
2
So wait a second, you have tried all of that, but not the Flash BIOS Button? It's designed to recover from a scenario exactly like that.
The Flash BIOS Button will force-flash the BIOS to whatever version you want, no matter the problem with the BIOS, CPU, RAM or GPU.

1. Download the previous BIOS file for your board and extract it.
2. Rename the BIOS file to MSI.ROM, and save it to the root of your USB flash drive / USB stick (not in a subfolder). FAT32 formatting is a must for the USB flash drive.
3. Plug the USB flash drive that contains the MSI.ROM file into the Flash BIOS Port on the rear I/O panel.
4. With the PC off, press the Flash BIOS Button, and the LED starts flashing for about 5-6 minutes.

You need to find a USB stick / pen drive that the board likes. It needs to flash for about 5-6 minutes and then it will reboot.
Anything drastically different (under a minute of flashing, or over 10 minutes of flashing) and the flashing didn't work.
The Flash BIOS Button method is very picky about the USB sticks sometimes. In fact, the old and cheap USB sticks with small capacity seem to work the best for that method, read here or here.

Yup. I did all that. Spent a good 3+ hours in a rage-fit about it too. Definitely didn't know this function (or button) existed until now.

Found an old USB drive w/ photos on it that my wife had as part of a promotional thing...worked like a charm. Rig is back up to 99% now (lights on my keyboard aren't on, but I'll figure that one out).

Thank you.
 

citay

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Oct 12, 2016
Messages
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Just your typical PC troubleshooting, you can spend hours on a problem, and the solution has been just one click or action away the whole time. I know it all too well.

Anyway, you're welcome. Always glad when i can help.
 
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