The 10-sheet Fellowes Powershred DS-3 is a wastebasket-style paper shredder with very good features for the price and excellent reviews from owners. An opening in the front for unshredded paper lets this model double as a recycling bin. Rated at 10 feet of paper per minute, the DS-3 can shred documents faster than most paper shredders, and this model builds in multiple safety features. The power switch is in the back to minimize accidental turn-ons, and even when the shredder is turned on (with auto-start), a sensor shuts it off if a hand gets close to the opening. This makes it extra safe even for under-desk use.
Unlike most budget-priced paper shredders, the Fellowes DS-3 has a 9-inch insertion slot so office paper is easy to insert. A handle folds up to make it easier to lift off the heavy motor and cutters for emptying the bin, which can be lined with a plastic bag. The 2-inch confetti-style shreds are longer than that made with pricier crosscut shredders, but still considered adequate for most users. The main drawback is that this shredder can't handle CDs, DVDs or unopened envelopes, though it can shred staples, small paper clips and credit cards. If you need a more powerful shredder with a larger capacity, consider stepping up to the Staples SPL-TXC122A (*Est. $150).
ConsumerReports.org doesn't include the Fellowes Powershred DS-3 in its comparison tests of paper shredders, but does cover three other Fellowes models. We found helpful owner-written reviews and ratings of the Fellowes Powershred DS-3 at Fellowes.com, Amazon.com and Walmart.com.
This paper shredder earns unusually high recommendations from owners: Of the more than 80 users reviewing it here, 98 percent say they'd recommend it to a friend. Owners rate this model especially high for safety and overall design. Some report jams with unopened envelopes or more than about seven sheets at a time.
Review: DS-3 Crosscut Shredder, Contributors to Fellowes.com
More than two dozen owners review the Fellowes DS-3 paper shredder at this retail site. The majority (about 83 percent) are happy with it, rating it 4 or 5 (on a 5-point scale), with praise for this model's safety and overall design. Owners like the fact that it doubles as a recycling bin, and find its size, power and capacity fine for home user. As with most paper shredders, this model works best at about half the manufacturer's rating, so shredding four or five sheets at a time (rather than 10) is best. A few owners report quality control or durability issues.
Review: Fellowes DS-3 10 Sheet Cross-Cut Shredder (3231001), Contributors to Amazon.com
About a dozen owners review the Fellowes DS-3 paper shredder here after a few weeks of use. Most are very happy with its performance, convenience and safety. Ratings for capacity range from three sheets to 10. One owner reports premature breakdown. A video review demonstrates the shredder in use, so you can see how the safety sensor works and get an idea of the noise level.
Review: Fellowes DS-3 10-Sheet Cross Cut Shredder, Contributors to Walmart.com
This video is the same demonstration as on the Walmart.com site, but in a bigger window for easier viewing. It shows the main features of the Fellowes DS-3 in use. The safety sensor clearly works, and the noise level seems moderate for a paper shredder.
Review: Fellowes DS 3 Demo, Fellowes Staff
ConsumerReports.org tests three other Fellowes paper shredders, not the Powershred DS-3, but the rankings here give some idea of how Fellowes stands in relation to six other brands. Tests here cover both speed and capacity, and scores also take convenience into account.
Review: Paper Shredders, Editors of ConsumerReports.org, October 2011