Integrating Incompatible Fire Alarms to a Centralized System

By Andrew Erickson

August 20, 2023

Seamless integration and monitoring of various systems, especially critical ones like fire alarms, can be a daunting task. One question I frequently encounter in my interactions with professionals in this field is:

"How can I consolidate alarms from different fire alarm manufacturers into one centralized server?"

Let's dive into the underlying problem inherent in that question and work together to devise a practical, efficient, and scalable solution.

The Complication of Multiple Incompatible Fire Panel Manufacturers is a Serious Problem

Are you responsible for fire alarms in multiple buildings? For organizations overseeing vast infrastructures, like university campuses or military bases, the integration of safety systems becomes imperative.


The Muxpad II is a Data Gathering Module (DGM), which is a part of the Digitize System 3505 Prism LX Supervised Bidirectional Polling Alarm Monitoring System. It is used to monitor addressable fire alarm control panels (FACP). As you'll learn, there are many DGM models to take in contact closures and more advanced outputs

Yet, one of the primary hurdles you face stems from the sheer variety of fire alarm manufacturers and their proprietary systems that have emerged and evolved over the decades.

Within a single campus or military base, there may be a diverse range of fire alarm panels installed. Some buildings might feature alarm panels manufactured by United Technologies, while others house Notifier panels from Honeywell. Go further and you might find systems from Siemens, Bosch, Schneider Electric, ABB, Johnson Controls, Hochiki, and many other providers.

While the diverse range of systems stands as a testament to technological evolution and market dynamics, it also creates a significant challenge for you. Each manufacturer has its own approach to communication protocols, diagnostic codes, and output mechanisms. There is some useful overlap, but you're not going to easily find 100% interoperability with your central alarm monitoring system.

This diversity not only makes system integration a big task, but it also demands specialized knowledge and tools to maintain, monitor, and manage each system effectively.

The diversity of fire alarm panels, each with its quirks, features, and proprietary technologies, highlights your real need for a universal solution. You need a solution that can bridge the disparities, ensuring that safety is uncompromised and that monitoring remains efficient and seamless.

The real question is: how can your make universal compatibility happen?

Imagine What Universal Compatibility Would Mean For the People You Serve

Imagine a system where, regardless of the manufacturer or age of your fire alarm system, you could integrate it into one central monitoring platform. This would be a system where you have a unified view of every alarm in every building, all harmoniously brought together.

Your ideal solution would:

  • Accept industry-standard inputs, ensuring it's adaptable to any fire panel with contact-closure outputs.
  • Offer flexibility in the number of inputs, allowing customization based on the size and scope of your premises.
  • Constantly supervise wire integrity to provide real-time status on alarm state, clear state, or wire breaks.
  • Cater to more than just fire alarms, handling other essential alerts such as panic buttons, patient calls in hospitals, water level alerts, or carbon-monoxide detectors.

The Digitize Data Gathering Module (DGM) Brings in Alarms from Many Different Fire Panels

What if you had a tool that could seamlessly bridge different fire alarm systems without an issue?

The Digitize solution to this challenge is the Data Gathering Module (DGM). Designed to be the bridge between various fire alarms, the DGM is adaptable and reliable.

One of the first things you'll notice about the DGM is its adaptability. Recognizing that every establishment has unique requirements, the module offers varied configurations ranging from 8, 16, 24, or 32 inputs. So, whether you manage a smaller facility or a sprawling campus, there's a DGM setup tailored for you.

"Integration" is a word often met with sighs. You may be thinking of system downtime risk and overly complex setups. This is made simpler with the DGM. Most fire panels, regardless of the brand or model, have standardized alerts such as "FIRE" or "BURGLARY".

For this reason, one DGM can monitor between 4 to 16 typical fire panels. This scope effectively covers an average-sized building or a small cluster of buildings.

The universality of the DGM's contact closures means that any remaining inputs can be repurposed for other vital alerts, from duress signals to carbon-monoxide detectors.

But the DGM is just one piece of the puzzle. Once you have your DGMs operational, data from all these devices can be funneled to a central Prism LX server. This two-part system ensures all your fire alarms, regardless of their individual manufacturer, are centralized and easily accessible.

But the utility of the DGM doesn’t stop at fire alarms. Imagine being able to extend the same monitoring efficiency to other safety alerts, from security breaches in critical zones to medical emergencies in healthcare settings.

With its universal contact closures, the DGM grants you this flexibility. It's designed to evolve with your needs, ready to accommodate newer safety standards or monitoring requirements that might emerge down the line.

The DGM by Digitize is a nod to simplicity in a world of complex systems. It's a tool that isn't just another piece of technology. It's here to make your safety management more streamlined and adaptable.

Call Digitize to Get a Detailed DGM Information Booklet (PDF)

In our digital age, ensuring seamless integration and effective monitoring of crucial systems like fire alarms is imperative. With solutions like the DGM by Digitize, we are one step closer to universal compatibility and centralized monitoring.

Not only does the DGM bridge the gap between diverse fire alarm systems, it also comes with the unmatched support of the dedicated Digitize team, who are committed to ensuring your safety systems work seamlessly.

Our dedication to client service includes custom engineering when needed. That fact, combined with the unrivaled flexibility and adaptability of the DGM, allows you to confidently handle your alarm monitoring project. You'll know that you're equipped to handle whatever the future of your job may bring.

To discuss any alarm project you're working on and get a PDF full of tech specs and pricing, call us at Digitize today. We're dedicated to ensuring you have perfect visibility over all your alarms, regardless of who manufactured your fire alarm panels.

Call 1-800-523-7232 or email

Andrew Erickson

Andrew Erickson

Andrew Erickson is an Application Engineer at DPS Telecom, a manufacturer of semi-custom remote alarm monitoring systems based in Fresno, California. Andrew brings more than 17 years of experience building site monitoring solutions, developing intuitive user interfaces and documentation, and...Read More