ASUS Maximus Z690 Hero failures
UPDATE: ASUS has issued a recall. You can check the capacitor, or check the serial and part numbers. See the bottom of this article.
I recently bought an ASUS Maximus Z690 Hero for my new i9-12900K build. In the last few weeks since release, some people are reporting their ASUS Z690 motherboards are burning up and quit working. Fortunately for me, I have been unable to find DDR5 memory, so my board is still sitting in the box – which is fortunate because it appears the board I got his this very issue.
What is the issue? Reporters say the system runs for some time, then there is often an audible pop and the system hangs. People report smelling smoke and even seeing the upper corner of the board glowing. After powering down, there is damage to the upper corner of the board by the digital readout. Powering on the board throws code 53 and never reboots.
As more reports came in, they seemed to focus on these two 4C10B MOSFET components getting fried.
Buildzoid started looking at these reports and noticed something strange. The boards that are blowing up have a capacitor that appears to be backwards. These polymer-aluminum polarized capacitors have defined positive and negative electrodes. According to the specs on these types of capacitors, if you reverse the polarity accidently (i.e. if you put them in backwards) then leakage current will increase and ‘the life span may decrease’. This would explain why they might work for a short time, but then burn out.
Here’s a picture of a burned up board with the backwards capacitor. You can see the polarity stripe on the left. All the boards that appear ok have the positive stripe on the right.
There is no official word from ASUS on this yet, but a big reddit thread has basically concluded that this is the issue and discourage anyone from using these boards immediately. If they happen to blow when you are away, the system does not always power down and could present a real fire hazard as people have reported the components becoming glowing hot by the time they can even shut the system down.
Give buildzoid’s whole video a watch:
12/29/2021 Update: Here’s the recall information from ASUS
We have recently received incident reports regarding the ROG Maximus Z690 Hero motherboard. In our ongoing investigation, we have preliminarily identified a potential reversed memory capacitor issue in the production process from one of the production lines that may cause debug error code 53, no post, or motherboard components damage. The issue potentially affects units manufactured in 2021 with the part number 90MB18E0-MVAAY0 and serial number starting with MA, MB, or MC.