A system for monitoring a variable output paper processing device is provided. The monitoring system includes a counter which counts the number of papers processed and provides a count signal for each paper counted. A controller receives the count signals and totals the counts. The controller includes an internal clock as well as an interrupt signal generator. Upon receipt of the count signal, the interrupt generator generates an interrupt signal starting the internal clock. The internal clock has a duration of a predetermined value larger than random noise signals. The controller compares the internal clock signal to the count signal and determines whether a valid count has occurred. The controller includes a CPU and RAM which are coupled by a PAL which isolates the RAM from the CPU when a voltage supplied to the CPU and PAL falls below a predetermined level.