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What's the difference between a control panel and a keypad?


The Control Panel is the brain of an alarm system. It's what turns the alarm on and off (arm/disarm), provides some information, detects an alarm condition from a connected security device and trips the signaling devices (sirens and monitoring equipment). Most control panels are armed/disarmed via a digital keypad that uses a four-digit code.
The keypad is equivalent to the keyboard of a computer. In some security systems the two are combined. Normally, the keypad is mounted by the door that is used to enter and exit the premises.