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The $129.95 Disc Slicer and Dicer

Destroy CD And DVDs In Seconds-and Keep Your Data Safe

If you wanted to dispose of sensitive data CDs or DVDs, you previously had two choices: obliterate them yourself to prevent a thief from recovering your data or spend a ton of money on an NSA-grade disc pulverizing device. Neither is very satisfying.

The manual method is impractical for a couple of reasons. It is far from easy to physically cut up the discs yourself, and you run the risk of leaving enough of the media intact for a thief to examine. You can't use a paper shredder to do the job, of course, since most are geared for dicing and slicing paper, not discs. You can also microwave the discs for five seconds. While that will destroy the data, you might not want to use this microwave for heating up any food after you see the results or the smell.

Enter the Primera DS360 (Or What We Call Shredzilla)

Brush Included

The Primera is about the size of an average bread machine or toaster oven, with dimensions of 9.5"w x 7.75"d x 10"h. It weighs 12 lbs, 12 oz. Each full-size CD takes ten seconds to shred. There's no need to push - just set a CD or DVD on the opening and let the machine sense, grab and go like a hungry piranha. The opening is too thin to accept two CDs at once and if you do this you'll jam up the works.

The systems is not infallible: A special size mini CD - a 3.375" (8.5725cm) Memorex diskette - didn't trigger the sensors until picked up as it stood at attention from the top of the slot. However, a credit card-sized membership ID went down with no fuss.

Several good points about the DS360 showed up right away. First, Primera Technology Inc. shredded disks in trouble-free, 10-second passes. By contrast, the output of a recent disk "shredder" we've seen, after a three-pass process, was a whole CD with tiny pin-holes of light and a sort of "waffling." The result was unreadable in a normal CD drive, but every whole disk was ready to carry off from the trash for further experimentation by passers by. Second, the DS360 is a one-pass, cross-cut shredder with an easy, pull-out drawer. A generous window lets you view the colorful or crystalline shards to see when it's time to empty. The more disks shredded and stirred together, the more confounded any hopeful data reconstructionists would be.

To protect your hands, a small, black brush is included to help sweep out any shiny, colorful, approximately 0.16" x 1.25" (4.064mm x 31.75mm) confetti-like waste that doesn't drop out of the bucket when you turn it over and pat or shake into the trash. The brush has no storage place on the machine, but you can find a spot somewhere. (We didn't, and will be scrambling to find it when the review is over.)