Question MSI B450 Tomahawk MAX sometimes fails to boot

Nov 20, 2019
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Hi everyone,

I've just built a new PC with MSI B450 Tomahawk Max mobo and Ryzen 7 3700X processor and sometimes I'm getting a solid red CPU diagnostic led on the boot. Also I'm not getting any signal to my monitor, only black screen. Not even BIOS/Setup screen appears.
I say sometimes, because when I try to reboot it again it usually boots just fine the second time. I mean it is not a huge problem, but something is definitely wrong here.

Only reason I can think of is, that I am using BETA version of the BIOS B450 Tomahawk MAX (E7C02AMS.341 beta). I am using this one as official latest BIOS had problems, where the PC wouldn't wake up from sleep or hybernation and I had to reboot instead, which is a bigger problem in my eyes. I have also not found problem like this reported anywhere yet. I will definitely try to update the BIOS once a new version comes out and see if that fixes the problem.

I have tried changing the monitor and cable, PSU is good. I have tried single RAM stick, different slots, XMP or noXMP. I've also checked and reseated the CPU 2 times, no bent pins, all seems fine. I am certain that those are not the issue, as once the PC boots everything works just fine.

CPU: Ryzen 7 3700X
Motherboard: MSI B450 Tomahawk Max
Ram: Patriot Viper4 2x8GB KIT DDR4 3400Mhz CL16
SSD/HDD: 1TB Intel 660p SSD
GPU: MSI GTX 1080 Armor
PSU: EVGA BQ 750W
Chassis: Phanteks Eclipse P350X
OS: Windows 10 Pro

Hopefully someone knows what is going on here,

Thanks

edit: added full specs
 
Last edited:

Lutfij

Titan
Moderator
When posting a thread of troubleshooting nature, it's customary to include your full system's specs like so:
CPU:
Motherboard:
Ram:
SSD/HDD:
GPU:
PSU:
Chassis:
OS:

You should be able to work out of the box with that board, as I've worked with the B450M Mortar Max(regardless of a latter revision of BIOS updates). Which slots did you populate the board with for your rams? How did you enable X.M.P if you're stuck at CPU debug LED?

BIOS 3.4 is no longer showing as Beta but the BIOS version 3.51 is. I would suggest you get back to BIOS version 3.40 as opposed to v3.41 Beta.
 
Nov 20, 2019
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You should be able to work out of the box with that board, as I've worked with the B450M Mortar Max(regardless of a latter revision of BIOS updates).

BIOS 3.4 is no longer showing as Beta but the BIOS version 3.51 is. I would suggest you get back to BIOS version 3.40 as opposed to v3.41 Beta.
The board worked out of the box just fine, but as I mentioned I had problems with PC not waking up properly after going to sleep, which meant I had to reboot the PC everytime. This was happening to me on the BIOS version it came with and even on the latest version I tried, which was 3.40, that is why I tried the v3.41 Beta, which resolved the sleep problem, but now I am having booting problems (at least I think it is since then, as I have not been using the PC much before I updated the BIOS, so it is possible, that it just didn't occur before just by luck)

Which slots did you populate the board with for your rams? How did you enable X.M.P if you're stuck at CPU debug LED?
I have switched the ram around and enable/disabled XMP, whenever I successfully booted at least to BIOS and then I left it in different slot (or different state of XMP) for a while, until it failed to boot again.

Once again whenever the PC fails to boot with the CPU debug LED I have to turn the computer off with the power button and then when I turn it on again it 99% boots successfully.

I will definitely try the newest beta v3.51, I must have missed that one. Anyway I will post again if it helps me or not.
 
The board worked out of the box just fine, but as I mentioned I had problems with PC not waking up properly after going to sleep
.....
Many people have problems with system waking after sleep with many different motherboards. It seems to be as much a Windows issue as anything to do with the motherboard. I've learned to disable sleep, and especially hybrid sleep. Way to much trouble and it saves so little energy anyway as Ryzen's idle with such extremely low power consumption. And start-up is almost instantaneous with the newer BIOS containing AGESA 1004b I shut down if going to be away for a while.

But a couple things to note: BEFORE updating BIOS do a CMOS reset, and then do a CMOS reset again AFTER updating BIOS. You can do the reset by restoring BIOS default settings, found in the 'SAVE & RESTART' menu. For some reason, many of MSI's B450 boards have had problems booting after BIOS updates and this helps. Not sure why, but maybe this makes sure no undefined BIOS settings make it through the update which can cause odd behaviors.

Also make sure you've updated to the latest AMD chipset drivers found on the AMD web site. Don't use Windows Update to do it.

Lastly, with all your memory swapping make certain the DIMM's are in the correct slots and leave XMP off and let memory run in default speed until you know it's a stable system. That should 2133 or 2400.
 
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Nov 20, 2019
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But a couple things to note: BEFORE updating BIOS do a CMOS reset, and then do a CMOS reset again AFTER updating BIOS. You can do the reset by restoring BIOS default settings, found in the 'SAVE & RESTART' menu. For some reason, many of MSI's B450 boards have had problems booting after BIOS updates and this helps. Not sure why, but maybe this makes sure no undefined BIOS settings make it through the update which can cause odd behaviors.
Alright did this, just as you described with the CMOS reset both times and successfully updated to BIOS beta v3.51, the computer then run no problem. But this morning I go to turn on the computer and same thing happens, after about 5seconds CPU debug LED is on, so I try to leave the PC for about 2 minutes, but nothing happens. I turn the computer off, then turn it on and the second time it boots up no problem. I was also checking in which order it goes through these debug LEDs, first flashes the CPU LED for a few second, then it goes to DRAM, VGA LED and then it boots up normaly. From this I presume that if the RAM was the problem it would stay on the DRAM debug LED not the CPU one.


Lastly, with all your memory swapping make certain the DIMM's are in the correct slots and leave XMP off and let memory run in default speed until you know it's a stable system. That should 2133 or 2400.
I have tried doing this already as I have left the DRAM in different slot, or turned XMP off for a day, but the next day I was stuck at the CPU debug led again, so I just returned it back. Also I would hope that if this was the problem I would be stuck on RAM debug LED not the CPU one.


Also make sure you've updated to the latest AMD chipset drivers found on the AMD web site. Don't use Windows Update to do it.
I have not tried this yet and I forgot to do so yesterday, so I will be trying that today and see if that helps.



If nothing else helps I will just wait for the BIOS v3.50 (non-BETA) see if that helps and it hopefully also fixes the sleep problem. If the sleep problem returns I will just disable it and the just leave the PC on or turn it off completely. And be done with all this ...
 

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