Setup guide part 3.
Flashing Steam Deck BIOS for DeckHD.

This guide will walk you through the process of flashing the BIOS on your Steam Deck.

Approx. 10 mins.

Why is it necessary to flash the BIOS firmware?

In simple terms, the Basic Input/Output System (BIOS) is a small program stored in a computer's motherboard that helps it start up and communicate with its essential components, such as a display device. 

Since the DeckHD display is a completely custom device for the Steam Deck, we need to customise the original BIOS to include the correct display initialisation commands and to let the OS know that we’re booting up with a 1200p display instead of the default 800p. This will ensure compatibility between the computer and the display. Please rest assured, all changes made in our custom BIOS are purely on the Analogix MIPI Receiver's configuration side, and we do not tinker with any other components that can affect the stability of the Steam Deck.

How long will DeckHD support the custom BIOS firmware?

We plan to continue providing BIOS firmware support for the foreseeable future. We are also optimistic about having the opportunity to work together with Valve to release official BIOS which natively support the DeckHD screen.

How often do I need to flash the BIOS firmware?

Users will need to flash our BIOS firmware each time your Steam Deck upgrades to a newer version of SteamOS. There are currently no workarounds for this as each SteamOS update will revert our BIOS firmware. However, we have made this process as easy as possible for you. Once you have our script downloaded in your Steam Deck’s Desktop Mode, all you need to do is execute and wait a few minutes, then you’re good to go!

The DeckHD BIOS is scheduled to be open-sourced in Q4 2023. This is a part of our ongoing commitment to community development and transparency.

Flashing Steam Deck BIOS for DeckHD

Upon the first bootup with the DeckHD screen, it is normal to see a static screen because we haven’t adjusted the configurations of the different chips on the motherboard. To fix this, we need to flash our custom BIOS in order for the OS to be compatible with the DeckHD screen.

Flashing Process

  1. Update your Steam Deck OS Version to at least 3.4. You can check your current OS version in Gaming Mode via Settings -> System -> OS Version. If your Steam Deck is below OS Version 3.4, please use Check for Updates at the top and apply the update accordingly, or you can enable Developer Mode in System, scroll down the left side menu to Developer, enable Show Advanced Update Channels, go back to System, select Steam Deck Beta in Steam Client Update Channel, and choose Main in OS Update Channel, this should get you to the latest.
  2. Turn on your Steam Deck and switch to Desktop Mode. Please note that the touch panel hasn’t been calibrated yet, so we suggest using the trackpad and buttons during this process.
  3. Use the link below to download our BIOS-flashing script. Vice versa, you may download the script on your PC first and transfer it via a USB stick or SD card: Script Download
  4. Once the file is in your Desktop, we need to set a sudo password first for your Steam Deck before we run the script. If you’ve done this already, please skip to step 5.
    a) Search and open Konsole on your Steam Deck
    b) Type “passwd” and hit enter
    c) Enter your new password twice (use the Enter key (R2) to submit)
    d) Close the Konsole window
  5. Right click on the program, go to Properties -> Permissions, and tick the checkbox for “is executable” and close the Properties window
  6. Double click to run the program
  7. Enter your sudo password when prompted
  8. The Steam Deck will restart automatically after flashing
  9. In rare cases, the Steam Deck will boot up with a white screen, this is a known issue at the moment and a force shutdown (long hold power button) should do the trick

DeckHD is a product of FX Technology Limited.

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