Last updated on December 20th, 2018 by Garrick Dee
A while back I talked about the Braun Series 9 electric shaver that had four cutting elements Braun says will give you the closest shave. I never thought that I’d see an electric razor with five cutting elements!
But product designers and engineers at Panasonic was able to pull off what I think was impossible, shoving 5 blades into an electric shaver head.
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And here’s the result of that innovation, the Panasonic ES-LV95-S Arc 5. Panasonic says that their award winning 5-blade shaving system with precision blades angled at 30 degrees will deliver outstanding closeness.
We will find out in this review if those claims are accurate and if you should invest around $200++ for this 5 blade electric shaver or if it is just a waste of money.
A quick look at the features
- Features an industry first 5-blade shaving system in an electric razor
- Precision Nanotech blades angled at around 30 degrees give you a close shave
- Pivoting head gives you flexibility when shaving trouble spots like the jaw and neck area
- Powering this razor is a high performance linear motor that delivers 14,000 cuts per minute or around 70,000 cross-cutting actions for the 5 blades
- Has a pop-up trimmer that help you sculpt the sideburn and goatee area
- Compatible for wet and dry shaving
- LCD display
- Cleaning station deep cleans and charges this at the same time
- 45-minute run time (or approx. 15 shaves)
- 2 year warranty
- The 5-blade system gives you a very close shave
- Cheaper than a Braun series 9
- Gives you the flexibility to shave wet or dry depending on your preference
- Powerful motor
- Navigating this razor in tight areas like the mustache or chin area can be tricky with the very large head
- Can cause irritation to men with sensitive skin
- Shorter running time
- Noisier than a Braun
The very first thing you will notice with this electric shaver is the very large head that houses the 5 rows of blades.
This is the very first electric razor in the market with uses a 5-blade system. The battle has begun, if the Braun 9 series boasts of a 4 blade system, Panasonic has 5.
This battle is getting crazy and similar to the cartridge razor market where there are razors that have 6 blades like this from Dorco!
I wonder if there will ever be a 6 blade electric razor, my guess is probably no but you’ll never know.
Five sharp nanotech blades set at a 30 degree angle do all the heavy lifting. Panasonic says this is the perfect angle for a close shave.
Powering this beast of a razor is a linear motor that Panasonic says delivers 14,000 cuts per minute and when you add up the 5 blades, that’s around 70,000 cross-cutting actions per minute.
If you have a tough beard you need to cut fast then you’ll have to strongly consider this electric razor for this feature alone.
Flexible Micro-Foil Patterns
Covering the blades and protecting your skin are flexible micro-foil patterns that capture, hold and cut different types of hair that make up your beard.
These are carefully designed to lift up facial hair that lay flat or grow in different directions as well as stubborn hair to give you the closest shave perhaps of any foil razor in the market right now.
Active Shaving Sensor
Panasonic also added a feature that detects facial hair density. It increases power when it detects dense areas and decreases power on areas with less facial hair.
This prevents unnecessary irritation and heat build-up on the foil. It also increases efficiency in terms of run time since this razor will use up more juice than their 3 or 4 bladed counterparts.
To help ensure that the 5-blade shaving head reaches even the toughest parts like the neck area, this razor has a multi-flex pivoting head.
What it simply means is that not only will it pivot back and forth but also side to side. It provides added flexibility when shaving areas under the jawline, chin and neck area.
To help trim sideburns or mustache area, it also comes with a pop-up trimmer that helps sculpt these areas to keep you looking sharp.
Whether you prefer wet shaving or dry shaving, the Panasonic ES-LV95 allows you to shave with or without shaving cream.
There lies a conundrum. Five cutting elements can a lot of irritation for men who have sensitive skin but adding shaving cream can decrease that irritation.
Premium Automatic Cleaning Station
To keep this electric razor performing at its peak it comes with a cleaning station that also doubles as a charging stand.
The cleaning station deep cleans and washes excess facial hair and gunk. This keeps the razor in tip top shape for years to come.
You can also wash this razor under running water to save on cleaning fluid. This feature is a lot of help when you travel because you don’t need to bring the bulky base. For regular home use, it adds a level of convenience because it saves you time.
Great Tool for Frequent Flyers
This razor has several features that make it a great travel buddy for men who do spend a lot of time on in different time zones.
First it’s got a universal voltage power cord so you can just about use this in any continent you may have to bring a power adapter to fit in different plug configurations.
Second it’s got a travel lock feature that prevents it from accidentally turning on inside your luggage and alerting the TSA. It also comes with a travel pouch so that you have something to store this into.
LED display helps keep track of battery life and if this razor needs cleaning.
On a full charge (takes one hour to charge) this razor will last for around 45 minutes. That’s equivalent to around 15 shaves, if your average shaving time is 3 minutes.
|Run time||45 minutes|
|Mustache / Sideburn Trimmer|
Here’s a product video from Panasonic that shows you the different features…
A lot of men who’ve used this razor said that this razor does cut really close thanks to the 5 shaving elements and the powerful motor.
Few men compared this to Braun and said the same thing – this razor shaves closer compared to the Series 7 and Series 9. The latter is Braun’s top of the line electric shaver at the moment and has four cutting elements.
Panasonic’s head is more flexible than the Braun’s that only pivots forward and back. This razor also pivots from side to side giving it more agility. This helps it shave areas like the neck easier.
The downside to the 5 blade head is it heats up faster than a Braun, it isn’t hot but warm. It mows down beards at a faster rate so this should not be an issue.
It also takes some practice navigating the large head over tight areas like the lip and chin area.
Another potential issue would be the noise as foil shavers tend to be louder and with a powerful motor and one extra blade, expect this to be louder than a Philips Norelco.
Closeness is where this razor shines. If you only shave once every two or three days, this razor would really benefit you because 5 blades can mow down a multi-day beard growth. Panasonic also added a sensor technology that detects denser growth areas and this helps without you having to manually adjust.
You can buy this from Amazon for less than $200. And it comes with free 2-day shipping if you join Prime. Amazon offers extended warranties of up to 3 years if you want more peace of mind.
Buying this direct from Philips would set you back around $250.
If you’re looking for a close shave, only a few electric razors come close to this 5-bladed electric razor. The 5 blade system and powerful motor really cuts close with fewer passes. But the large head is a concern when shaving tight areas like the lip and chin area.
Since this is a foil type razor, expect this to make a lot of noise. Men who have sensitive skin may want to avoid this because it has five cutting elements. But the ability to use this for wet shaving somewhat decreases risk of irritation.
It is a great option if you cannot afford the Braun Series 9 shaver and would want something that’s very close performance wise since it has one more blade plus a powerful motor and the same 2 year warranty.
You won’t go wrong with either the Braun or this Panasonic, it all comes down to personal preference and which shaver will fit the needs of your skin and beard type.
Garrick spends his days researching and writing about grooming. When he’s not in front of his computer, you can find him hanging around with his wife and son.