Best Paper Shredder

Our roundup of the best paper shredders available today

Having a paper shredder for disposing of sensitive documents is more important than ever, with risks of identity fraud, financial fraud and cyber-attacks become more prevalent. Whether it’s documents with personal information at home or business documents in the workplace, you need a way to safely and reliably destroy documents containing sensitive information.

The exact type of shredder that will best suit your needs is going to depend on how you’re using it. If you have a large number of documents that you’re going to dispose of on a regular basis, you’re going to want a shredder with a reasonably fast shredding rate, and a large-capacity storage bin.

Here’s our roundup of the best shredders available today.

We’ve picked out good options for paper shredders in the three main categories of shredders. This guide includes Strip-Cut, Cross-Cut, and Micro-Cut shredders, which each offer different styles of shredding to suit different usage scenarios. These are all specced out at different shredding speeds and storage capacity, and some have extra features like compatibility with shredding CDs.

These are all good value options to pick from depending on your specific requirements.

We’ve compared the features and functionality of each of these shredders, and assessed how effective they are for different usage scenarios. Each of these shredders would be a good choice, and we’ve broken down what advantages and disadvantages they offer in detail. Read on for our guide to the best shredders available today.

Our Recommended

Best Paper Shredder

Editor’s Choice
PROS

Cheap reliable shredder

Compact size

Cross-cut shredding for great security

CONS

Not able to shred CDs

Only has a five minute running time

Limited to just 8 sheets

This is a basic Cross-Cut shredder at a reasonable price. It can handle 8 sheets of paper at a time and can handle documents of up to 8.7 inch width.

The cross-cutting functionality is ideal for anyone who wants to have strong certainty that these documents cannot be restored once shredded, and this is a good price for such a shredder.

This shredder is designed to be able to handle shredding credit cards and has no problem shredding documents with paper clips or staples attached.

It’s nicely compact and weighs just 7 lbs. It’s handy for keeping in a home office or small business premises but would not be a good choice for anyone regularly dealing with huge volumes of documents on a regular basis.

Runner Up
PROS

Very lightweight

Cheap

Can shred CDs

CONS

Short continuous runtime

Strip-cut is not very secure

You can get more advanced shredders in this price range

This is a cheap lightweight shredder with pretty basic functionality. It only offers strip cutting, so this is not a good choice for highly sensitive documents that you absolutely need to be certain are destroyed, but it is a simple and effective way to perform basic shredding.

This also has support for CDs, so it’s a good way to destroy any burnt CDs with sensitive files stored on them.

The continuous run time of just 2 minutes will be plenty for destroying a small number of documents, perhaps in a domestic context, but your documents will start to stack up quite quickly if you are generating a lot of documents to destroy.

This shredder comes with AmazonBasics 1-year limited warranty, in case it develops a fault in the first 12 months of ownership.

Best Value
PROS

Excellent security from Micro-Cut shredding

Solid design

Decent sized 3.9-gallon wastebasket

CONS

Quite heavy

Only 5 minute continuous running time

30-45 minute cooldown time.

This is a beast of a shredder, targeting professional and business uses. It’s a Micro-Cut shredder with a continuous running time of 60 minutes. If you have massive piles of documents that you need thoroughly shredded, this is a great choice, since you can keep feeding it with documents for an hour without interruption.

It supports up to 12 sheets of paper at once and can handle credit cards or CDs. The pull-out tray for emptying the wastebasket is a nice convenience for emptying it quickly.

We would recommend this shredder for any offices that are regularly generating a large number of documents that require being completely destroyed. It’s probably overkill for a small home office or domestic use, but anyone with more serious demands on shredding should consider this one.

PROS

Hour-long continuous run time

Comes with 5 year-long warranty

Excellent security from Micro-Cut shredding

CONS

Very heavy

Quite large

Overkill for domestic use

This is a beast of a shredder, targeting professional and business uses. It’s a Micro-Cut shredder with a continuous running time of 60 minutes. If you have massive piles of documents that you need thoroughly shredded, this is a great choice, since you can keep feeding it with documents for an hour without interruption.

It supports up to 12 sheets of paper at once and can handle credit cards or CDs. The pull-out tray for emptying the wastebasket is a nice convenience for emptying it quickly.

We would recommend this shredder for any offices that are regularly generating a large number of documents that require being completely destroyed. It’s probably overkill for a small home office or domestic use, but anyone with more serious demands on shredding should consider this one.

PROS
CONS

Things To Consider

Shredding documents is one way to keep them secure, but how you dispose of the shredded documents is as important. If you are dealing with especially sensitive documents, perhaps split the shredded remains into multiple bin bags, and dispose of them in multiple locations.

Do I want a Strip-Cut, Cross-Cut or Micro-Cut shredder?

A strip-cut shredder is the most basic kind, which simply cuts paper, cards, and CDs into thin strips. These don’t offer the best level of security since anyone who finds these shredded strips would be able to reassemble the strips to form the completed original with just a bit of patience and glue. They are fast and cheap, and for low stakes, domestic usage is perfectly up to the task. These are also a convenient way to prepare a waste paper for recycling.

A Cross-Cut shredder offers more robust security, usually at a higher cost. Instead of documents just being cut into thin strips, it will also cut each individual strip into multiple smaller pieces. This would significantly increase the work required to reassemble any shredded documents, so these are a good choice for more sensitive personal or business documents.

A Micro-Cut shredder will turn paper into confetti, turning a single sheet of paper into thousands of tiny pieces. This would take an extreme forensic operation, and a lot of time and effort, to even attempt to reassemble. This is ideal for the most sensitive documents that you would want to be absolutely certain have been destroyed, but it does make it the most expensive type of shredder, and it can take quite a long time to fully shred documents.

Do these Shredders feature protection from overheating?

Each of the shredders featured here features protection from overheating. Thermal overload protection will automatically shut down the shredder if it’s getting close to overheating.

Our Verdict

Editor’s Choice

We’ve picked the Aurora AS890C as our top shredder. It’s an excellent shredder for the price, and for most users, Cross-Cut shredding is a good compromise between the basic Strip-Shredding and comprehensive Micro-Cut shredding. It’s nice and compact, and ideal for a home office.

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I skew Chaotic Good where possible, and love pressing buttons, viewing pixels and listening to sounds. I’ve written for publications like Rock Paper Shotgun, Eurogamer, VG247 and Kotaku UK, and spent 13 years running SavyGamer.co.uk. If you ever get the chance you should ask me to tell you the story about that time I had a fight with a snake on an island off the coast of Cambodia.

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