Pros: Shaves well, looks cool, very quiet, holds charge well
Cons: Badly placed trimmer, cannot be used when plugged in
I had used Norelco razors for many years, and my last one had kept going for about seven or eight years. It was losing its ability to give a close shave, and probably needed new blades, and possibly new heads. I faced the dilemma many people face when they own any appliance for a bit too long: spend money on repairs or replacement parts, when something else might die soon thereafter on the thing, or just buy a new one. I went, somewhat reluctantly, with buying the new one.
Of course, the main reason one buys a razor is for shaving, and I’ll start with the best feature of this razor: it shaves well. I get a closer, faster, less problematic shave from this Norelco than I ever got with any of my previous Norelco (and one Schick) electric razor. The triple-head not only pivots on a flexible neck, but each head also has some ability to pivot, within its pocket. I have not had this razor pull once, even when I skip a day of shaving (Saturdays, usually). I have received only one cut, and that was when I shaved over a hive (I have several allergies and occasionally get hives occasionally).
From the best feature to the worst. There is, in my opinion, a major design flaw with this razor, and it lies in the trimmer. The trimmer is located on the back of the razor, just below the swiveling neck for the triple-head. The razor curves upward at that point, possibly for aesthetic reasons, thus positioning the trimmer too close to the heads. Also, when the trimmer is “extended” for use, it barely extends at all. The end result is that manual contortionism is required to use the trimmer on sideburns without the heads grabbing and shaving the hair above the ears. Somebody was not thinking too well or too practically when this razor was designed. A change in angle, plus more extension of the trimmer, would correct this, or deactivation of the heads when the trimmer was active, would also resolve the issue.
Okay, here is another questionable design choice. When it comes to charging this razor, it must be either in its stand or in its carrying case. You cannot just plug the razor in, as it has no place to insert the adapter connection. That means that, if you should happen to let it run down enough to last through a shaving, you can either put it in its stand to recharge for a while (the instruction booklet says a three-minute charge will get you three minutes of shaving), or you can engage in acrobatics and shave while leaving the razor in its stand. Hmmm.
Anyway, when the razor is fully charged, you get at least an hour of shaving time from this razor. Norelco claims you will get up to twenty-one days of shaving per charge, but I do not know how long they factor for each shave. I typically recharge it after each shave, in its stand, and it goes to fully charged within twenty minutes or so, as indicated by a cobalt blue light going from a slow flashing to a steady state on being on. Initially, it goes from empty to fully-charged in one hour.
The carrying case is sleek and shaped to fit the razor. I will never use it, as I do not travel. The stand, though, I use daily. It does not look very sturdy, but it has never toppled, while holding the razor. A case of optimal minimalism?
This razor looks really cool, with a sleek outline and a modernistic curvy image to it. It is very lightweight, probably because the charger is not in the razor, but in the stand or carrying case. Being light and sleek is not an entirely a positive combination, though, as it makes it easier for the razor to slip out of your hand.
Cleaning is fairly easy. Each head flips open, separately, like a flower opening up from the center. The whiskers can then either been blown out or rinsed out (make sure it’s unplugged!). Cleaning takes but two minutes or so. Norelco recommends cleaning after each usage. They also recommend replacing the heads, as a unit, annually.
There is a toll-free help-line (1-800-243-3050) from Norelco. The razor comes with a full two-year warrantee. There is a nice, illustrated, comprehensive instruction booklet, in English and in Spanish.