Bonsaii DocShred C156-C Micro-Cut Review
Pros: High security, inexpensive
Cons: Slow, loud
Our Analysis and Test Results
Below we further discuss how the DocShred C156-C Micro-Cut performed in each of our individual tests.
The DocShred C156-C is one of the better performers in our shredding quality testing, falling just behind our highest performers.
It got a big bump up in the scoring due to the better security it offers with its micro-cut blades. It was also able to meet its advertised maximum capacity of eight sheets, but it was starting to sound like it was really straining at that point. The multiple folded layers of junk mail envelopes tended to jam the DocShred unless they were particularly thin. It was able to consistently rip credit cards into tiny micro-cut bits, but again it sounded like it was struggling when doing so. Its main slot is not created for shredding CDs, but it has a separate dedicated CD shredding slot. This is not a micro-cut slot; it only shreds the CD into three large pieces. This is more than enough to deter the vast majority of thieves as it renders the CD unreadable in a disc drive. However, it is possible to reconstruct the data of any intact surface of a CD by using a microscope and a healthy amount of work. Obviously, very few thieves would be this dedicated, and very few people's personal information would be worth that much effort. However, if you happen to work for a high profile law firm or trading group, or some other institution that stores valuable secrets on CDs, you'll want to get a model that shreds CDs into smaller bits through the normal shredding slot (or do what the Department of Defense does and grind the reading surface down with sandpaper).
In general, if you want the security of micro-cut and tend to shred less than 10 sheets at a time a few times a week, the DocShred will provide more than enough shredding performance. If your shredding jobs tend to be larger, you'll likely want a model with a higher sheet capacity, which in many cases would necessitate switching to a cross-cut model.
Speed is one area where the DocShred did not perform so well. It scored just a bit above the bottom in this metric.
This isn't surprising, as the DocShred is only an eight-sheet shredder. In our speed testing, it clocked a maximum capacity speed of 44 sheets per minute, which was a significant amount below the average of 68 sheets per minute. In short, the DocShred's speed will most likely feel inadequate if the sheet count of your shredding jobs regularly reaches into the triple digits. However, for those whose shredding jobs tend to be isolated sessions of 20 sheets or less, the DocShred's speed will not be an issue.
Ease of Use
The DocShred scored smack dab in the middle of our test suit as far as its user-friendliness goes.
The interface is simple, utilizing a single switch with off, auto, and reverse options. The shredding slot does not have a lip, which is ideal for feeding paper from directly above the shredder, but it can be a bit more difficult if it's tucked away under a desk. The bin has a small window so you can tell when it is full. This is a nice feature, but because the shredder is fairly low to the ground, this window is not particularly easy to see. This model is a sit-on-top style. Meaning the shredding unit balances on top of the bin and must be lifted off and removed to empty the shredded paper bits. This is much less convenient than a draw style bin as the shredding unit is heavy. However, the DocShred is the only sit-on-top model we tested that includes a handle on the shredding unit, allowing you to easily remove it with just one hand. Our testers really liked this feature.
At 5.5 gallons, the DocShred's bin is fairly large for a sit-on-top model. The dedicated CD shredding slot deposits the sharp shards into a separate little shelf within the bin. This isn't totally necessary, but it is nice if you'd rather dispose of the sharp CD shards separately from your normal trash. Overall, the DocShred's handle makes it the most convenient sit-on-top model that we tested, but if you shred more than a few hundred pages a month, you'll want an easier to empty, larger capacity drawer style model.
Noise is another area where the DocShred struggled in our testing. It scored one of the lowest scores in this met.
While we wouldn't expect any shredder to be harmonious, the DocShred's high-pitched whine brought to mind an annoying chihuahua yipping from the purse of the lady that just cut you in line to complain that her latte wasn't foamy enough. Long story short, we wouldn't want to listen to the DocShred for more than a few minutes, but for shorter shredder sessions, it would not be an issue.
The DocShred offers solid, low-capacity shredding performance with the added security of micro-cut. It is a budget-friendly device offering a great value for those looking for the best security but who don't need to shred high volumes.
The Bonsaii DocShred C156-C Micro-Cut is a reasonable performer that offers the high-end security of micro-cut at a low price. It is the perfect choice for those that put a premium on security and tend to shred less than 100 pages a month.
— Max Mutter and Steven Tata
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