Aurora AS420C Desktop-Style Cross-Cut Shredder Review

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A small model with a 4.5-inch shredding slot, users nonetheless appreciate its desktop convenience for light use. The Aurora As420C is especially popular with first-time shredder owners who don't want to make a major financial commitment.

The diminutive Aurora AS420C Desktop-Style Cross-Cut Shredder suits users who like to shred on the spot, according to reviews. Posts at Amazon and Target crow about the convenience afforded by its size. Reviewers report keeping it close at hand for daily shredding sessions, reading the message and immediately shredding the document, and storing the unit in a desk drawer or inside a cabinet near the spot where mail is sorted. The Aurora AS420C also pleases users with its ultra-low price.

The biggest complaint recorded in Aurora AS420C reviews is the narrow width of the shredding slot -- ironically, the design feature that underlies its popularity. About half the size of the throat on most other shredders, the 4.5-inch slot enables a very compact footprint but can handle only a maximum thickness of four layers, which means folding a standard letter-sized sheet of paper in half before inserting. Some users who otherwise commend the performance find this step irritating.

Features include auto on/off and reverse modes. The model is rated to run for two minutes at 4-sheet capacity before needing a cool down period, and the 1.3 gallon bin holds the equivalent of 40 sheets of paper. The Aurora AS420C (starting at $29, Amazon) can also decimate paper clips, staples, and credit cards. It comes with a detachable power cord and a letter opener.

A combination of budget pricing, unimposing silhouette, and simplicity of operation make the Aurora AS420C Cross-Cut Shredder a decent selection for light personal use -- but only if you're not one to let sensitive documents pile up.

Maralyn Edid

Maralyn is a veteran reporter, writer, researcher, and editor. From her early years at Crain's Chicago Business and the Detroit bureau of Business Week, then on to a long-term stint at Cornell University's ILR School and now at Cheapism.com, Maralyn has been -- and remains -- committed to getting ...

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