Philips Norelco Shaver Reviews

Philips Norelco SensoTouch 3D 1280X/47 Review

Note: Philips recently updated their product lineup – The SensoTouch 3D 1280X/47 now falls under the Series 8000 category as the Philips Shaver 8900.

Philips Norelco 1280X

Main features at a glance:

  • GyroFlex 3D contour-following system with three dynamic parts that independently flex outward, pivot around, and tilt inward to follow the natural contours of your face
  • UltraTrack heads cover 50% more skin surface with three shaving tracks that catch every hair
  • AquaTec technology allows you to shave wet with gel or foam for extra skin protection or dry for convenience
  • JetClean System thoroughly washes, lubricates, dries and charges to renew the shaver for a superior shave day after day

Everyone has a rival – Edison had Tesla, Pepsi has Coke, Apple has Samsung, and in the shaving world, Braun has Philips. These shaving giants are arguably the top two brands when it comes to man hair maintenance. And the giants duking it out is great because it means better products, more choices and more competitive prices for us, the Consumers (which is a pretty neat name for a rock band, btw).

Braun’s weapon of choice is the foil blade and it throws down the gauntlet with the Series 7, 5 and 3, while Philips wields the rotary blade with the SensoTouch 3D, 2D and PowerTouch.

We’ve already examined Braun’s offerings here, so let’s see if Philips has the stuff to take on the Big B.

We’ll start with the flagship SensoTouch 3D 1280X/47.

Design and Build quality

If Braun shavers are Jedi lightsabers, Philips shavers are Star Trek phasers. Fans can argue forever about which is better than the other, but it really boils down to personal taste.

The 1280X/47’s design oozes high-tech – it’s almost alien looking, in a cool way. The large, bulbous shaving head is a stark contrast to the sleek, compact lines of the Series 7. But as we’ll see in a minute, the differences go beyond mere appearances.

Niceties included with this premium model is a touchscreen display that shows all its status indicators at a glance, including how many minutes of shave time you have left so you’ll never get caught out by a low battery.

It also features a handy travel lock that prevents any accidental operation while it’s in your travel bag – a 3-second press and it’s securely locked; another 3-second press and it’s ready to go. A travel pouch is included in the bundle. Nice.

Performance

First things first: The SensoTouch 3D series delivers a superior shave. Like the Braun Series 7, it’s as close to a manual shave as you’re going to get for an electric shaver, but the Philips beats it by a hair in terms of comfort.

It’s helped by some pretty nifty key features. First is UltraTrack, Philips’ answer to Braun’s ActiveLift and OptiFoil system. Each of its three independent shaving heads is equipped with specialized shaving tracks for long, medium and short hairs that catch the maximum amount of hair in every stroke.

Philips Lift & Cut

The Philips Super Lift & Cut System

From there, the Super Lift & Cut dual blade system kicks in to lift and cut the hairs below skin level, resulting in a close, even shave, aided by a GyroFlex 3D system that flexes independently to match your facial terrain.

The Braun Series 7’s foil design is perfect for large, smooth areas such as your scalp, but the 1280X/47 has the upper hand when it comes to uneven skin areas like your face.

People with sensitive skin will appreciate the low-friction SkinGlide shaving surface, which glides easily across your face for minimal irritation.

The 1280X/47 comes bundled with the Jet Clean System, which may come in handy when it comes to maintenance, but the shaver is easily cleaned with a quick rinse in the sink anyway, so it’s more of a fancy toy than a necessity.

Conclusion

The Philips Norelco SensoTouch 3D 1280X/47 (how’s that for a mouthful!) is the undisputed king of rotary shavers. Elegantly designed and packed with lots of practical and useful features, it closely beats out the Braun Series 7 thanks to its innovative triple-head design that manages to squeeze out a slightly better overall shave.

Still, if foil is your thing, the Series 7 is the way to go.

Tip: For those who don’t care for the JetClean system and want to save some money, there’s the SensoTouch 3D 1280X/46, which is the same shaver minus the cleaning system.

Pros: Superior shave, gentle on sensitive skin, excellent build quality, easy maintenance, JetClean system included.

Cons: Base required for charging, 3 rotary heads to pop open and clean can make maintenance a hassle, travel pouch doesn’t include room for the base, replacing the 3 rotary heads can be expensive.

 

Philips Norelco SensoTouch 2D 1150X Review

Note: Philips recently updated their product lineup – The SensoTouch 2D 1150X now falls under the Series 6000 category as the Philips Shaver 6100.

Philips Norelco 1150X

Main features at a glance:

  • GyroFlex 2D contour-following system adjusts easily to the curves of your face
  • DualPrecision heads shave even the shortest stubble
  • Super Lift & Cut action lifts hairs to cut below skin level for a closer shave
  • AquaTec seal for comfortable shaving, wet or dry
  • SkinGlide shaving surface slides smoothly over your skin for a close, easy shave

Is your beard is not thick or high maintenance enough to justify a top-of-the-line shaver? Then the SensoTouch 2D 1150X is right up your alley. This little all-rounder packs a whole lot of features at an affordable price.

Design and Build quality

The 1150X draws a lot of the same design cues from the top models, and it looks like it’s from THE FUTURE. The urge to go “PEW PEW PEW” when it’s in your hands can be overwhelming. You have been warned.

Philips makes some good quality stuff, and this one is no exception. It’s well put together and handles great with a non-slip grip.

The entire SensoTouch 2D range shares the same internals – the only difference between models is their outer case designs and battery life. So feel free to pick the best looking of the lot.

Performance

The main difference between the SensoTouch 2D models and their higher-end siblings is the shaving heads.

The SensoTouch 3D models have three shaving heads that move independently of each other in three directions, compared to the 2D’s two. In theory, that gives the 3D series a better shave, but the practical difference is minimal – the 2D does an upstanding job, and it’s very quiet to boot.

While this model doesn’t have the 3D’s nice UltraGlide cutting heads, its Dual Precision head performs well, nabbing even the shortest stubble with ease.

Battery life is excellent too – the sturdy lithium-ion battery will give you up to 17 days of smooth shaving on a single charge. Great for short trips saving you the hassle of taking the charging base along.

Philips’ marketing speak for its wet/dry shavers is AquaTec, and it means you can use it with shaving creams or gels for a more comfortable shave, or use it in the shower. The Jet Clean system is included in the box.

Conclusion

If you’re after the closest shave possible or if you have very sensitive skin, the 3D series is probably a better option. Otherwise, we highly recommend the Philips SensoTouch 2D 1150X – it combines the perfect balance of features, quality and price. Philips has a winner in their hands. Two twirly mustaches up.

Pros: Shaves great, looks great, above average battery life, quiet, travel-friendly, Jet Clean system included.

Cons: Can’t be used plugged in, cleaning the many shaving heads can be a chore.

 

 

Philips Norelco PT730 PowerTouch Review

Note: Philips recently updated their product lineup – The PT730 PowerTouch now falls under the Series 4000 category as the Philips Shaver 4500.

Philips Norelco PT730

Main features at a glance:

  • AquaTec technology allows you to shave wet with gel or foam for extra skin protection or dry for convenience
  • DualPrecision system effectively shaves long hairs and short stubble
  • Flexing heads automatically adjust to every contour of your face and neck for a close, comfortable shave
  • Super Lift & Cut dual-blade action lifts hairs to cut comfortably close below skin level

As Philips’ entry-level shaver, the PowerTouch series (recently changed to the 4000 Series) is out shined by its more fully featured siblings. But it stands up admirably well on its own as a basic shaver, and sometimes basic is all you need.

It’s like the Uniqlo of the shaving world – offering simple, high quality essentials at prices that are easy on the wallet. That’s the PowerTouch PT730.

Design and Build quality

Design-wise it’s nothing to dance about. It looks decent – no shiny LED touchscreens or a floating head like the SensoTouch series, but it has just enough flash to avoid being too drab with its large triple shaving head system, a splash of blue over the grip area, and a power indicator light.

It feels solid, comfortable and reliable. No hint of the word “cheap” here. The build quality is right up there with what we’re used to from Philips.

Performance

Philips' DualPrecision blades

Philips’ DualPrecision blades

The PT730 shaves wet and dry, with a DualPrecision foil design that uses vertical and circular patterns to catch both long and short hairs in a single pass. It also has a flexing head that adapts to your facial contours for a more comfortable shave.

It does take a couple more passes to get all the hair in the hard to reach areas compared to the SensoTouch models with Gyroflex heads though.

The integrated pop-up trimmer is useful for trimming and shaping sideburns, goatees, mustaches, even monobrows. Cleaning up is easy. Because the heads detach as a single piece, it’s as simple as pop and rinse. A full charge gets you up to 17 days of shave time, which is great.

Overall, this is an excellent shaver considering the price – you can quite easily grab one online for under $60. At that price range you’d be hard pressed to find anything better.

Conclusion

The PT730 doesn’t have a lot of frills. It’s made for one thing, and one thing only: shave. And it does that one thing really well. It’s robust, reliable and offers a decent shave at an incredible price. For guys just starting out, it’s the perfect first shaver and introduction to the world of rotary shavers.

Pros: Surprisingly decent shave for an entry-level model, does wet and dry, great battery life, fantastic value at under $60 online.

Cons: Harder to get a close shave around the jaw and neck compared to the top models.

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