The Panasonic Arc3 line of shavers has been around for more than 8 years. During this time, there have been some incremental updates to this series, consisting mainly in some visual updates and a few other improvements.
In 2015 at the International CES Panasonic unveiled the new LT-series Arc3 electric shavers. This time around, the update was a significant one, a complete departure from the older models.
Let’s see exactly what Panasonic’s new budget oriented line of electric shavers has to offer.
Here’s a quick list of the most important features:
Multi-flex pivoting head. Until now this was only limited to the more expensive Arc4 and Arc5 shavers. The new Arc3 LT now feature a shaving head that moves up and down, sideways and back and forth.
Beard density sensor. Again, a feature normally found on the range topping Arc5 line is also present here. This sensor detects the differences in beard density and adjusts the power output accordingly.
Multi-function LED display. You can easily check the remaining battery or travel lock status.
Other noteworthy features that aren’t exactly novelties to the Arc3 line include:
- 3 individual cutting elements (2 finishing foils and one long hair trimmer)
- Wet / dry operation
- 13 000 CPM linear motor
- 30 degrees nanoblades
- Pop-up trimmer
- Sonic cleaning mode
- Travel lock
- Cleaning and charging station (not all models)
- Charging stand (not all models)
There are currently 3 variations of the Arc3 LT line: ES-LT7N-S, ES-LT5N-H and ES-LT3N-K.
Here are the main differences:
|Model||Price||Cleaning & Charging Station||Charging Stand||Color Scheme|
|ES-LT7N-S||Check price||Yes||No||Metallic silver|
|ES-LT5N-H||Check price||No||Yes||Metallic silver|
|ES-LT3N-K||Check price||No||No||Glossy black|
As you can see, the differences are only related to the included accessories (a cleaning & charging station or a simple charging stand) and the color scheme. The shaving performance of all LT shavers is identical.
How do the new LT shavers compare to the old Arc 3?
As previously mentioned, Panasonic redesigned the Arc3 line completely from the ground up.
The first major difference compared to the older generation is the design. Subjectively, I think the new shavers look significantly better and have a much more premium feel, resembling the new Arc5 razors.
They are also larger and the shaving head is bulkier. We’ll find out in our review if this will impact the ergonomics of the shaver.
What constitutes a definite improvement in terms of ergonomics is the new thumb-rest on the front of the shaver, the generous rubber grip and the locking mechanism of the shaving head.
We also have to give props to Panasonic for including some of the technologies found on their superior shavers, like the multi-flex pivoting head and the beard density sensor.
The new cleaning station is very compact and uses a detergent solution. While I personally prefer Braun’s alcohol based cleaning cartridges, the Panasonic detergent packs are very reasonably priced.
Performance-wise, I expect the new Arc3 LT shavers to be better than the older generation. How much better? That’s something we will be finding out pretty soon.
This is where things go a bit sour for the Arc3 shavers. The premium look and feel of the LT razors also comes with a rather premium price tag.
The MSRP for the entry level razor, the ES-LT3N-k is currently $150, while the full-option variant sells for around $200 or more. These numbers will likely go down, but at this moment they are quite pricey.
The direct competitor of the Arc3 in the entry level segment used to be the Series 3 from Braun. But considering that the Series 3 3040s can be bought for less than $50, I don’t think that’s the case anymore.
To be perfectly honest, the older Arc3 had the edge over the Series 3 in terms of closeness and speed and I expect the new ones to be even better. But again, it remains to be seen exactly how much better and if the difference in performance justifies the significant price gap.
The Arc3 also includes the new RT and SL models, but their MSRP price of $100 is still pretty high considering that they are fitted with a significantly less powerful 8500 cpm motor and a basic shaving head.
The new Panasonic Arc3 LT electric shavers are definitely a major step up from the old generation.
They look like a high end product and, at least on paper, their specs match the premium feel. The price is unfortunately quite high at this moment but that’s not unusual for a recently launched product.
Stay tuned for our review of the new Arc3 LT line to find out if their performance meets our high expectations. You can also read Panasonic’s press release here.