The unsung heroes of many offices, shredders don't get much attention. We tested a few of the latest models, which boast handy new features and sleeker designs.
Designed for junk mail, this desktop shredder devoured large envelopes and up to 20 sheets of unfolded paper at a time without jamming. It had the most stamina of the models we tested, running for 15 minutes before needing a 30- to 45-minute cooldown. One drawback: The 1.5-gallon bin fills up quickly.
This microcut shredder, which has a roomy 4.8-gallon bin, produces smaller clippings than the crosscut models we tested but can handle just seven unfolded sheets at a time. It automatically senses imminent jams and reverses to eject excess paper. The unit, which shuts off when it senses a hand near the chute, lasts 10 minutes before needing a 25-minute cooldown.
The Shredmaster has an 8-gallon bin and can tackle up to 16 sheets of unfolded paper at a time. Its self-cleaning blades move back and forth to remove excess clippings when you open the bin to empty it. A red light is supposed to warn of imminent paper jams, but that feature did not work when we overfilled the chute. The pricey unit lasts just four minutes before needing a 20-minute rest.
A double door and removable wastebasket make it easy to empty this shredder's 7-gallon bin. The unit automatically reverses if it senses a jam and tackled 10 sheets at once without a hitch. It runs for 10 minutes at a clip before needing a relatively lengthy 50-minute cooldown.