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[SUCCESS] Gigabyte Designare Z390 (Thunderbolt 3) + i7-9700K + AMD RX 580

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Gigabyte Z390 Designare
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Hi @CaseySJ . I've successfully flashed the Z390 Designare BIOS from F9i to the modded F9i. Question: Should the BIOS version in the setup page have the same version info as the original F9i since it's a modded version of the official F9i?
Normal to add to @CaseySJ has said. It will always indicate the same date and version.
 

CaseySJ

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Okay, thanks. So with this new F9i modded BIOS -but without flashing my onboard Thunderbolt– should I see Thunderbolt items under Thunderbolt in About this Mac<System Report in Mojave?
No. Those are two completely different things.
  • F9i modded BIOS only updates Intel Microcode for the CPU
  • Titan Ridge modded firmware enables Thunderbolt Bus
 
Joined
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Raspberry Pi 4 is a good choice. The wiring diagram and instructions are located here:

I can also provide (a) location of chip on motherboard, and (b) binary file to flash.

Meanwhile please have a look at above post to familiarize yourself with the overall procedure.

Update: Here's the location of BIOS chip on Z390 Designare:

View attachment 522023
Overnight waiting didn't help. Still dead. I ordered this one (so I can try either the CH341a or the Pi4): https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B07SNTL5V6/?tag=tonymacx86-21

They didn't have the recommended cheap clip and this one was in stock for same-day delivery. Also got the jumper wires.

If choosing between the two, which method do you recommend? Pi4 with your supplemental procedure or the CH341a? If I want to double check the voltage on the latter, which pins do I check?

Any additional tips for flashing m_bios (most of the tips in this thread are re. thunderbolt)?
 

CaseySJ

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Overnight waiting didn't help. Still dead. I ordered this one (so I can try either the CH341a or the Pi4): https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B07SNTL5V6/?tag=tonymacx86-21

They didn't have the recommended cheap clip and this one was in stock for same-day delivery. Also got the jumper wires.

If choosing between the two, which method do you recommend? Pi4 with your supplemental procedure or the CH341a? If I want to double check the voltage on the latter, which pins do I check?

Any additional tips for flashing m_bios (most of the tips in this thread are re. thunderbolt)?
I would recommend Pi 4 first without the supplemental procedure. Attaching the clip to the chip must always be done very gently and with excellent near sightedness. If you are naturally near sighted and need glasses or contacts for distant objects, those corrective lenses should be removed. Also use a flashlight to align the clip to the chip and confirm that pin 1 on the clip is oriented with the tiny dimple on the chip.

The “flashrom” command needs to be tweaked a little. When you’re ready to proceed, the first thing we’ll do is attempt to read the chip. The SOIC clip may need to be adjusted (i.e. reseated on the chip) slightly until flashrom detects the chip.

The flashrom command to read the chip is:

Raspberry Pi:
sudo flashrom -p linux_spi:dev=/dev/spidev0.0,spispeed=4096 -c MX25L12835F/MX25L12845E/MX25L12865E -r bios-1.bin

CH341a USB reader/writer:
sudo flashrom -p ch341a_spi -c MX25L12835F/MX25L12845E/MX25L12865E -r bios-1.bin

This should be done three times, each time incrementing the digit in “bios-1.bin” by 1. So second time it will be bios-2.bin. The existing contents of the chip will be read and saved into the bios-x.bin files.
 
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Joined
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Motherboard
Gigabyte Z390 Designare iMac19,1
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i9-9900K
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RX 5700 XT
I would recommend Pi 4 first without the supplemental procedure. Attaching the clip to the chip must always be done very gently and with excellent near sightedness. If you are naturally near sighted and need glasses or contacts for distant objects, those corrective lenses should be removed. Also use a flashlight to align the clip to the chip and confirm that pin 1 on the clip is oriented with the tiny dimple on the chip.

The “flashrom” command needs to be tweaked a little. When you’re ready to proceed, the first thing we’ll do is attempt to read the chip. The SOIC clip may need to be adjusted (i.e. reseated on the chip) slightly until flashrom detects the chip.

The flashrom command to read the chip is:

Raspberry Pi:
sudo flashrom -p linux_spi:dev=/dev/spidev0.0,spispeed=4096 -c MX25L12835F/MX25L12845E/MX25L12865E -r bios-1.bin

CH341a USB reader/writer:
sudo flashrom -p ch341a_spi -c MX25L12835F/MX25L12845E/MX25L12865E -r bios-1.bin

This should be done three times, each time incrementing the digit in “bios-1.bin” by 1. So second time it will be bios-2.bin. The existing contents of the chip will be read and saved into the bios-x.bin files.
Ok. Just so I've understood you fully: I should follow the guide you linked to including Y-splitting pin 17 (Pi) to pins 3 and 7 (clip)? Can this be done with the jumper wires or do I need to actually splice the wire?

I could get some reading glasses to get closer, though I think I'm pretty steady (I used to do Warhammer modelling/painting and I once OC'd a PowerMac G3 by literally cutting off the trace for one of the jumpers on the MB with a scalpel :lol:).

Should I disconnect other stuff like nvme drives or can I leave it in?

Oh and can you share the correct bios.bin? Should I just use the official F9i or something else (like the original F7 to match what I had)?
 

NorthAmTransAm

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I could get some reading glasses to get closer, though I think I'm pretty steady (I used to do Warhammer modelling/painting and I once OC'd a PowerMac G3 by literally cutting off the trace for one of the jumpers on the MB with a scalpel :lol:).

Absolute madness! Love it.
 

CaseySJ

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Ok. Just so I've understood you fully: I should follow the guide you linked to including Y-splitting pin 17 (Pi) to pins 3 and 7 (clip)? Can this be done with the jumper wires or do I need to actually splice the wire?
Jumper wires will suffice, and that alternative is preferred. Splitting the pins can be error prone.

I could get some reading glasses to get closer, though I think I'm pretty steady (I used to do Warhammer modelling/painting and I once OC'd a PowerMac G3 by literally cutting off the trace for one of the jumpers on the MB with a scalpel :lol:).
Okay, you’re not a rookie at this! Now I feel better.

Should I disconnect other stuff like nvme drives or can I leave it in?
Those can be left in.

Oh and can you share the correct bios.bin? Should I just use the official F9i or something else (like the original F7 to match what I had)?
The BIOS files cannot be used! I have extracted the image from my chip and will send that image to you. But please read the existing contents of the chip three times, compute their checksums with the shasum command, and post those checksums.

Will post BIOS image once I’m home. Enjoying a lovely latté at the moment.
 
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CaseySJ

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@Sapricot,

Attached is the flashrom BIOS image for Designare Z390. This is F9i with latest Intel Microcode and can only be applied with SPI Flash ROM programmer.

Note that both read and write times for this chip can be large. It may take a full 2 or 3 minutes to read the chip. Just give it time...

UPDATE: Slight change of plan (based on reply from Elias immediately below).
  • Once you've extracted your BIOS image, please compress and post it.
  • I'll make the modification mentioned by Elias below and post the updated file.
  • Then delete the BIOS image from your post (simply "edit" your post and delete the file).
 
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