I tried to search for the subjects of my post, but found nothing relevant. Posted on TiVo forum where others recommended that I post here since it may be more relevant.
Just to begin, I have been a TiVo “devotee” for many years, using four of their devices in two different residences. Attempted to install the most recent iteration of their Bolt in a 3rd residence ($900+!), on the Comcast (Xfinity) cable system using a Comcast (Motorola M) cable card.
Just for the record, I already have an older Bolt running successfully on the same cable system for several years, in another residence 20-miles removed from the 3rd one. When I attempted to install the newest Bolt in the 3rd residence (already operating successfully with a “Mickey Mouse” basic cable box from Comcast), I received a cablecard error code 161-1. Based on TiVo’s advice, I had obtained two cable cards from Comcast, and installed the second one, receiving the same error.
I then contacted Comcast as recommended in the error message and after a 3-way conversation with TiVo and Comcast, it was concluded that possibly the Bolt incurred a “failure to read CableCard” error and needed to be replaced. (This process required over an hour of “toing and frowing”!)
TiVo replaced the “defective” Bolt with another. In the meantime, I replaced the two Comcast cablecards with two “new” ones, just in case! (TiVo recommends obtaining five(5) based on their experience with them!) Replacement Bolt gave same error message with both of the new cablecards!
Spent two hours on telephone with TiVo Customer Service agent to try to resolve this. Since error message was received immediately upon attempt to set up TiVo, she recommended we set up TiVo without the cablecard first, and then install cablecard afterward. Long story (two hours!) short, still received same error message upon installation of cable card.
At that point, support agent said that TiVo would replace the TiVo unit, but I declined this offer. She transferred me to a “return agent” who immediately informed me that it was necessary for me to speak to a “2nd level” analyst to trouble-shoot before returning. (She did this without my consent!) However, after several minutes waiting for “2nd-level” support agent to take my call, the “2nd-level” agent informed me that she was in the same group as the one I had just spent two hours with! I asked her to transfer me back to the “return” agent, which she did. That same agent then tried to insist that TiVo had the “right” to send me a replacement Bolt, which I firmly declined and insisted on return and refund.
Unbeknownst to TiVo, I later attempted to setup the new Bolt in a nearby residence on the same Comcast system, using a cablecard that has been functioning for some time in a previous-generation Bolt (referenced at the beginning of this post). That cablecard gave me the same error message when I attempted to set it up with the new Bolt, which strongly suggests to me that TiVo and Comcast now have incompatible hardware, possibly due to the new interface that TiVo is marketing with their latest generation hardware.
I am posting this to see if anyone else has experienced this issue and/or if anyone knows of a solution.
Thanks for listening!
I am running older Tivo Premier XL4 'S, and I refuse to upgrade to anything newer because of Comcast not providing working cablecards, or any support. This has been going on for years, and Comcast still will not provide any way to activate a cablecard. They used to have a cablecard support number, but they just gave up.
See my post in the forums here:
It seems Xfinity is leaving us high and dry. This is really sad.
There should be one set of clear instructions on how to set up a cablecard. I have been asking for years to no avail.
Adding for others:
We have an online tool that does resolve a lot of cable card activation and pairing issues. The links below are good resources that I think have the detail that you are looking for:
Our specialized cable card support agents are available to our customers directly at 1-877-405-2298.