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ASUS Z690 Maximus Hero Motherboard Burnt with QCODE 53 and QLED Orange

maximumrog57
Level 7
So I purchased the ASUS ROG Z690 Maximus Hero and the GSkill DDR5 6000 CL36 Black combo from NewEgg and upgraded from the X99 MSI Gaming 9 ACK with following config:

  • Product Model: ASUS Maximus Z690 Hero Motherboard
  • BIOS/FW Version: 0803
  • CPU: I9-12900 K
  • Memory: GSkill Trident Z5 DDR5-6000MHz CL36-36-36-76 1.30V 32GB (2x16GB)
  • HDD: WD_BLACK™ SN750 NVMe™ SSD 1 TB
  • VGA: EVGA GeForce RTX 3070 XC3 GAMING, 08G-P5-3753-KR, 8GB GDDR6, iCX3 Cooling, ARGB LED, Metal Backplate
  • Power Supply: Corsair AX1200i
  • OS Version: Windows 10 Pro 64 Bit


I did upgrade the BIOS to 0803 and upgraded the ME and firmware listed on the support site along side whatever the armoury crate recommended on drivers, removed the old MSI drivers and enabled ReBar for the GPU, XMP II to get 6000 on the RAM and AI overclock on the CPU with UEFI Secure Boot and TPM 2 enabled.

Everything worked great for a day or two (no memtest done), I may have heard a clanky noise and assumed it was the fab clip from the air cooler being too close to the top case fan and chose to review it the next day after a full shutdown and restart.

Next day I get stuck on boot with QCODE 53 and QLED Orange (first time) and noticed a penny sized burn mark under the bottom right of the QLED, burnt to a crisp almost (top side, lot of soot) and melting the QCODE box a little. On documentation the error refers to incompatible RAM/wrong placement which doesn't make sense as it worked from initial boot, I'll admit I faced D6 errors because i had all peripherals hooked up on POST so with just the keyboard and mouse it worked and then with all items plugged in .

I have sent the mobo back to NE and waiting on a replacement. I concerned that this may happen again so wanted to check with everyone if they have any advice.

Attaching pictures for reference.

EDIT:
I also noticed that the specific RAM QVL is not listed on ASUS but GSkill , should I be concerned? Same for PSU...

Thank you!
AM
51,651 Views
132 REPLIES 132

Eaton
Level 7
Wow, I would have returned the board right away if I saw that damage!

There is new beta BIOS here you can try: https://www.overclock.net/threads/official-asus-strix-maximus-z690-owners-thread.1794802/page-68#pos...

I have the same board & RAM ready for a build, and will let you know if it works for me or not.

Eaton wrote:
Wow, I would have returned the board right away if I saw that damage!

There is new beta BIOS here you can try: https://www.overclock.net/threads/official-asus-strix-maximus-z690-owners-thread.1794802/page-68#pos...

I have the same board & RAM ready for a build, and will let you know if it works for me or not.


Thanks for the BIOS, please let me know how it works out.

The board wasn't like that from the start, it burned the second day at some point and the system didn't crash so I didn't notice this till I shutdown and started again.

As you can see the burn path is from the top right screw; worried I did something wrong but can't really figure out.

More ideas appreciated!
AM

mishraankit57 wrote:
Thanks for the BIOS, please let me know how it works out.

The board wasn't like that from the start, it burned the second day at some point and the system didn't crash so I didn't notice this till I shutdown and started again.

As you can see the burn path is from the top right screw; worried I did something wrong but can't really figure out.

More ideas appreciated!
AM


It looks like those cluster of chips were the source of the burn and it just spread to the screw area. I highly doubt the screw caused it to happen.

Eaton wrote:
It looks like those cluster of chips were the source of the burn and it just spread to the screw area. I highly doubt the screw caused it to happen.


Thanks! I can't find any documentation on this particular chip cluster or why it would overload given the install and upgrades were plenty in a short amount of time (assembly, post, firmware and bios updates). I have learned a lesson to make sure i do memtest86 through bios before i confirm any changes next time.

As you build and test any other advice for me to think or maintain? other than static free environment and general clean build process it'd be great to know, I have rebuilt using this case and components before so not sure what else could it be other than a motherboard defect at this point OR BIOS changes.

Just not used to see a premium product built for overclocking blow up like this 🙂

AM

mishraankit57 wrote:
Thanks! I can't find any documentation on this particular chip cluster or why it would overload given the install and upgrades were plenty in a short amount of time (assembly, post, firmware and bios updates). I have learned a lesson to make sure i do memtest86 through bios before i confirm any changes next time.

As you build and test any other advice for me to think or maintain? other than static free environment and general clean build process it'd be great to know, I have rebuilt using this case and components before so not sure what else could it be other than a motherboard defect at this point OR BIOS changes.

Just not used to see a premium product built for overclocking blow up like this 🙂

AM


I've never had a problem with static myself, but the only other thing I can think of that could cause this would be the PSU.
I would get the replacement board before worrying too much. If the replacement burns up as well, then it would be worth investigating other culprits.

Eaton wrote:
I've never had a problem with static myself, but the only other thing I can think of that could cause this would be the PSU.
I would get the replacement board before worrying too much. If the replacement burns up as well, then it would be worth investigating other culprits.

Fair enough, let me know how your build with beta or current bios works out.
cheers!
AM

Posting two more threads from Reddit where this issue with same mobo + ram config caused burn and error codes for others:

https://www.reddit.com/r/ASUS/comments/rjp8tt/asus_rog_z690_hero_motherboard_two_mobos_dead_in/

https://www.reddit.com/r/ASUS/comments/rjjjzm/asus_rog_maximus_z690_hero/

Starting to wonder if this is going to be a mass problem.

Spicedaddy
Level 9
Did you have a standoff behind the motherboard? I guess so if it was working before.

I agree, looks like the chip at the bottom shorted and burnt stuff above it. The screw is grounded so I guess that's shy current went there?

you did not tighten the screws too hard?

or can be ripped with the screwdriver and without seeing it damaging a capacitor?

PS: QCode 53: memory initialization error.

I guess it's the damage to the motherboard.

Anyway request an RMA.