yes exactly as mine behaved, and yes the hdd lamp blinked a couple times when boot then just turned off,
this is usually caused by some faulty hardware for example bluetooth/wlan, loose cable etc, and occurs when you are updating the fw (well might) if a component is "broken". In my case i was updating from 2.53 and didnt have the bluray drive in as the laser was broken, (was going to repair it) so in my case that caused the HDD loop error (drive missing).
do you get any error code?only way to get some picture on mine was recovery menu, gonna try find the site i used to get mine working. ok found what i used: IMPORTANT I DIDNT HAVE TO THROW ANY HDD OR ANYTHING I GOT IT TO WORK
Recently I been getting a lot of PS3's in of course BRICKed when downloading the new v3.21 update.
Reason is, the v3.21 is double-checking all your HARDWARE to make sure it is fully correct and functional incase you have MODDED it somehow.
(Wish I knew where all these MODS are Sony is claiming, must be the best kept secret on the 'net ever!)
Anyhow, I have been able so far to unbrick all the systems I have seen so far.
I also noticed unlike previous firmware updates, once you have started this update progress, you are LOCKed out of "RECOVERY MENU MODE" with the HDD trying to update!
Here is short-run down, on my "unbrick'ing" process.
BRICK TYPE #1 of 3
*** 60% forever loop - Gets to between 59% to 62% displays an error.
Answer: Your bluetooth/wireless/card reader modules is either loose, NOT the original ones shipped with your machine, or they are broken or non-working in parts.
Fix: Try removing them, and replacing or cleaning the ribbon cable, if that does not work, unsolder the 8pin EEPROM containing the mac/bluetooth/usb info, and solder onto a know working module.
BRICK TYPE #2 of 3
*** 65% forever loop - Gets to between 64% to 68% displays an error.
Answer: Your blu-ray drive is either loose, NOT the original one, or part of the drive board is dead, even tho it was playing discs before!
Fix: Try removing it, and replacing or cleaning all the ribbon cables, if that does not work, unsolder the 48pin BGA firmware chip and solder onto a know working drive board (very hard to do!!)
BRICK TYPE #3 of 3
*** 99% freeze loop - Gets to 99% and just sits there looking dumb!
Answer: Either your HDD is damaged or has a bad boot sector, or the reset signal on your motherboard is not working.
Fix: Try another power supply, seems to work in my cases, or replace the small eject/reset/power board in the front of the motherboard. (If HDD, see below)
IF ALL ELSE FAILS
And the FINAL answer, if all the above fails, normal due to bad download via wireless, or hdd corrupts the update, in these cases you will normall see fails at 10% or 20%, and for sure before it reachs 50%, in ALL cases, kiss this HDD goodbye, and your save files, because if you try again with SAME HDD you will be back in a loop, and need to redo the below FIX again:
The for sure FINAL un-brick fix (if all the above fails on your unit):
#1: Remove the looping HDD, and throw it away!
#2: Disassmble your PS3, and unplug the battery!
#3: Find another PS3 HDD that is from working machine which is using the same firmware that you WERE using before!
#4: Wait about 30 minutes for the removed battery to drain from your PS3.
#5: Reassemble your PS3
#6: Turn on your PS3 with the new HDD, BUT GO RIGHT AWAY into RECOVERY!
#7: At recovery menu, pick ONLY option "RESTORE PS3 SYSTEM" (i think #5)
#8: Answer all the appearing prompts, for lang./date/time/internet, etc.
#9: You now should have a working PS3 again running on the older firmware
At this stage, you can decide to try the update again, but if it fails, again you need to throw away the HDD, and get another one, or use your PC to ZERO-FILL it to get back into the recovery menu, after setting up the ZERO-FILLed HDD on another older firmware PS3.
That's all, have fun "unbrick'ing" your PS3, or sending it to Sony for a $224.87 replacement!
Oh if it is the fan do the fan trick:
1. power of back of the ps3
2. touch the eject
3. turn on the power in the back while holding finger on eject
4. enjoy youre ps3 lift of lol
tbh I don't think thats the prob the ps3 seems to collect very little dust but worth a try!