A small shaper is as good as no shaper. Shapers are 3 HP or greater and are meant for production runs in thicker stock than a router table. I own a 1 HP, Craftsman shaper with a 1/2" arbor. I haven't used it for a project in 25 years. It was a gift from a woodworker who was too frightened of it to use it. I'm not scared of it, just haven't found a need to use it.
I have 3 router lifts in cast iron tables and they will do everything I need. I can't remember why I ended up with 3, honestly, but it's definitely overkill. I do love my JessEm MastRlifts with the locking bit height. They are smooth as silk and make adjusting bit height a breeze. The router of choice is the venerate Porter Cable 3 1/4 HP bare motor, minus the base. I have a drawer full of bases by now and more routers than I will admit here..... maybe some were on sale?
The basic difference is the shaper has a large nut on top to secure the $$ cutters. The router has a collect which holds the cutters, no nut to get in the way of plunge type cuts. The 890 series from PC is a good middle size, but if you need more power go with the 3 1/4 HP. You are looking at around $1,000.00 total for all 3 pieces, a Bench Dog Pro cast iron top, Jessem lift and the PC motor, BUT it will do so much more in a small shop or DIY'r.
Now, there are folks who say use to a router bit collet in your shaper. BUT, the shaper RPM is only 10,000 at the highest. Many 1/4" router bits run the best at 20,000 RPM. So, you are now informed .......