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Aurora AU1230XA Anti-Jam 12-Sheet Crosscut Review

A speedy, compact, and intuitive paper shredder, perfect for household use at a price you just can't beat
Aurora AU1230XA  Anti-Jam 12-Sheet Crosscut
Credit: Aurora
Best Buy Award
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Price:   $59 List | $59.70 at Amazon
Pros:  Speedy, compact, user-friendly interface, budget-friendly
Cons:  Difficult to empty, heavy lid, medium security
Manufacturer:   Aurora
By Hayley Thomas ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Nov 9, 2021
Our Editors independently research, test, and rate the best products. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Learn more
67
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#8 of 14
  • Shredding Quality - 40% 6
  • Speed - 35% 8
  • Ease of Use - 15% 6
  • Noise - 10% 6

Our Verdict

With its compact body and budget-friendly price, the Aurora AU1230XA Anti-Jam 12-Sheet Crosscut Paper Shredder is a great option for most households. While it struggles with credit cards, it has no problem with junk mail, and this speedy paper shredder tackles 12-sheet stacks with ease. Its interface is intuitive, and jams are easy to reverse, keeping frustration at bay. The emptying process can be a bit of a hassle, but its compact size, medium-security cross-cut, and low price point make this machine the perfect choice for any home office.

Compare to Similar Products

 
Awards Best Buy Award  Best Buy Award  Top Pick Award 
Price $59 List
$59.70 at Amazon
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$26.14 at Amazon
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Pros Speedy, compact, user-friendly interface, budget-friendlyHigh quality shredding, micro-cut, helpful indicator lights, user-friendlyInexpensive, reliable, fastHigh security, inexpensiveSmall and compact, inexpensive
Cons Difficult to empty, heavy lid, medium securityInsecure handlesLoud, bin could be easier to emptySlow, loud, can't shred CDsSlow, not particularly powerful
Bottom Line A speedy, compact, and intuitive paper shredder, perfect for household use at a price you just can't beatA paper shredder that offers high security micro-cutting, helpful indicator lights and an easy to empty waste binThis shredder is perfectly sized, powered, and priced for home office useA decent choice if you don't shred often but want the highest securityA great space saver if you only need to shred documents occasionally
Rating Categories Aurora AU1230XA Ant... Amazon Basics 8-She... AmazonBasics 8-Shee... AmazonBasics 6-Shee... Aurora AS420C Desktop
Shredding Quality (40%)
6.0
9.0
5.8
5.7
4.4
Speed (35%)
8.0
7.0
6.5
4.3
2.4
Ease Of Use (15%)
6.0
7.0
5.7
5.7
7.1
Noise (10%)
6.0
6.0
3.0
4.0
7.0
Specs Aurora AU1230XA Ant... Amazon Basics 8-She... AmazonBasics 8-Shee... AmazonBasics 6-Shee... Aurora AS420C Desktop
Bin Capacity 5.2 gallons 4 gallons 4.1 gallons 4.1 gallons 1.32 gallons
Advertised Sheet Capacity 12 8 8 6 4
Measured Sheet Capacity 13 10 11 6 4
Type Cross-Cut Micro-Cut Cross-Cut Micro-Cut Cross-Cut
Dimensions 13.31" x 8.46" x 15.87 8.9" x 12.95" x 19.49" 12.8" x 7.3" x 15.9" 7.5 x 12.5 x 16 9.49" x 6.93" x 9.92"
Weight 13.1 Ib 17.2 Ib 8.3 lb 10.0 lb 4.9 lb
Shred Size 3/16" x 1-9/16" 5/32" x 15/32" 3/16" x 1-27/32" 5/32" x 15/32" 1.5" x 1-17/20"
Warranty 1 Year / 3 Year Cutter 1 Year Limited 1 Year Limited 2 Year Limited 3 Year Limited
Maximum Sheets per Minute 171 114 96 42 24

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Aurora 12-Sheet Crosscut Paper Shredder is a great budget-friendly shredder for most home offices. It provides average-quality shredding capabilities and medium-security cross-cutting for the casual user. Read on to see how it holds up to our rigorous testing.

Performance Comparison


The Aurora AU1230XA is a speed demon at a price you can't beat.
The Aurora AU1230XA is a speed demon at a price you can't beat.
Credit: Laura Casner

Shredding Quality


During our shred testing, we pay special attention to the security of the shred size and shape, the load or paper stack capacity, and junk mail shredding capabilities. We also note the general reliability and robustness of each shredder. This budget-friendly option does pretty well, but it cannot measure up to some of the pricier options in our test suite.


The level of security a shredder needs to provide ranges depending on what you're shredding. If you're looking for an at-home shredder for your annual taxes, you probably don't need to turn every document into confetti, rendering the cross-cut perfectly suitable. The Aurora 12-Sheet Crosscut offers a medium security level as the pieces post shred could be put together more easily than a micro-cut document.

This device claims to shred stacks up to 12 pages thick. We are sure to push the limits during our testing to find each shredder's true limits. The Aurora 12-Sheet easily shreds 12-sheet stacks and has no problem tacking on a lucky number 13 but struggles. At 14-sheet loads, the shredder begins to jam. After struggling to unjam and clean out the system, the shredder goes back to functioning without a hitch, as long as you don't exceed 13 pages.

As for junk mail, the Aurora 12-Sheet cuts through envelopes of all sizes with a slight decrease in speed. The size of shredded paper also has a mild variation dependent on envelope thickness. The larger the shredded pieces, the less secure they are.

The Aurora AU1230XA does okay with thick junk mail.
The Aurora AU1230XA does okay with thick junk mail.
Credit: Laura Casner

The general robustness and level of reliability that the Aurora 12-Sheet offers are expectedly average. It clearly struggles with shredding credit cards, made painfully obvious by the noise it makes while attempting to shred them. The output is somewhat varied from mangled but not shredded to cleanly shredded cards, so it is best to check to make sure your card has been efficiently shredded before emptying your basket.

Speed


We attack our speed metric from a few different angles. First, we test to see how quickly each model can shred through one sheet, followed by a timed 20-sheet shred. Lastly, we shred for a continuous 60 seconds to see how many pages each model can chew through.


The Aurora 12'Sheet falls slightly behind our top performers, but we are super impressed with its ability to keep up. It happily chews through one sheet in just four seconds. It smoothly sails through 20 sheets in 19 seconds with a stack of 12, followed by a stack of eight. Finally, the Aurora comes in hot with a whopping 171 sheets per minute. This outperforms other shredders in the same price range and will definitely make tax season a little less painful.

This shredder is one of the fastest we've have the pleasure of...
This shredder is one of the fastest we've have the pleasure of testing.
Credit: Laura Casner

Ease of Use


Ease of use can play a huge role in how often you utilize your shredder. The user interface is the biggest factor here. Intuitive error codes, easy-to-load shredders, and readable buttons are examples of a few attributes we keep an eye out for. Emptying the trash basket and the size of the trash basket also contribute to the overall user-friendliness.


The Aurora 12-Sheet performs very well here, with the exception of emptying the paper bin. The user interface is intuitive and uncomplicated. Using the clearly labeled slider to turn the shredder on, reverse jams, and turn off is straightforward. The small window allows the user to see how full the bin is, and the 5.2-gallon wastebasket is compact and easy to store. The biggest drawback here is taking off the heavy lid to dump empty the bin. Many other models have their bins on drawer slides so the hefty shredder portion of the device does not need to be removed.

The AU1230XA Anti-Jam does not have drawer for its paper bin, so...
The sliding controls are intuitive and user-friendly.

Noise


The noise these shredders emit may or may not affect your purchasing decision, but it is an important factor for most. You don't want to be on the receiving end of dirty looks in the office for having the squealing shredder. If you're the work-from-home type, you may have roommates or sleeping children that would appreciate a less intrusive sounding device.


While paper shredders are not known for their soft, soothing sounds, there are some that offer a less jarring and interruptive noise. Generally speaking, the lower the hum, the less intrusive. Overall the Aurora 12-Sheet is about average when shredding paper and junk mail but sounds quite strained with credit cards.

Value


We analyze the value of each shredder by comparing its price to its overall performance, but you also have to consider how you plan to use it. The Aurora 12-Sheet performs a little above average for A LOT less money. It is a great option if you are looking for an easy-to-use household shredder and don't want to spend the extra money, and it earns one of our awards for its great value.

Conclusion


This compact and budget-friendly friendly paper shredder is a great option for the average user. Its impressive speed comes in handy for large shredding projects, quickly chewing through 12 sheets at a time without jamming. The cross-cut offers enough security for most, and the user interface is straightforward and intuitive. If you are looking for an inexpensive shredder to complete your home office, look no further than the Aurora AU1230XA 12-Sheet Crosscut Paper Shredder.

Hayley Thomas

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