The good: extremely close shaves, very comfortable, recommended for sensitive skin, impressive build quality and finish, very good battery life, quiet, excellent cleaning station, replacement parts last a long time
The bad: can’t be used for wet shaving in the shower
Table of Contents
Braun Series 7 790cc is one of the most popular, technology packed and acclaimed electric shavers. It has received rave reviews from just about anyone for being able to provide extremely close and comfortable shaves.
Read along to get the whole story in our in-depth Braun Series 7 790cc review.
- Pulsonic Technology
- ActiveLift system
- 3 individual cutting elements
- Flexible Shaving System
- 3 Personalization Modes
- Clean & Renew System that cleans, lubricates, dries and charges the shaver
- LCD display with advanced capabilities
- 100% washable
- Quick Charge Option
Here is a breakdown of the most important features:
One of the main features of Braun’s top of the line shavers is the ability to capture more hair by using microvibrations, up to 10000 per minute according to Braun. Basically a motor causes the shaving head to oscillate and to more effectively catch stray hairs with the special foil design.
In the Performance section we take a closer look at this and if it really makes a difference.
Hairs that lie flat on the surface of the skin tend to always be a problem for most electric razors.
In an effort to address this shortcoming, Braun came up with a special design of one of the three cutting elements.
The middle cutter (pictured to the right) oscillates sideways and lifts the hairs lying flat, then cuts them to a manageable size for the other two cutters.
You can see the ActiveLift system in action here.
As it’s the case with its other shavers, Braun opted for a different shape of the perforations in the foil.
It has a hexagonal shape and should be more efficient at capturing hairs than the more common round one.
Here you can see a more detailed animation.
3 individual cutting elements
As you already know, Braun opted for a 3 blade cutting system for the 790cc that can move independently.
The outer ones are classic cutters that oscilate behind a perforated foil, while the one in the middle is the specially designed ActiveLift trimmer.
Flexible Shaving System
Almost all top of the line shavers from different manufacturers feature a flexible shaving head that can follow the contours of your face.
The 790cc is no exception and allows up and down pivoting of the shaving head and can also be locked into place by a switch located on the side.
3 Personalization Modes
A unique feature of this razor is the ability to select one of the three modes that best suit your skin and technique: Extra Sensitive, Normal, and Intensive.
Gents with coarse, tough beard will definitely welcome the Intensive operating mode, while the Extra Sensitive setting can be very effective for men with sensitive skin that is prone to irritations.
You can of course use different settings for shaving different areas of your face. Switching between modes is done by pressing one of the two buttons located on the sides of the ON/OFF switch.
Build quality and ergonomics
As expected, the 790cc doesn’t disappoint and impresses with a flawless and solid construction and a beautiful, high-end finish.
It looks and feels expensive, with no cracking noises and flimsy materials.
As far as ergonomics go, it strikes a nice balance of weight and shape, with grippy rubber on the sides and back.
Battery life and charging
With a fully charged battery, you can expect up to 50 minutes of use from your shaver. Charging it takes approximately one hour, with the option of a 5 minutes quick charge that should be enough for one complete shaving session.
Charging begins automatically when the razor is placed in the Clean & Renew System. You also have the option of using the supplied cable that plugs directly into the shaver. This is very convenient when traveling as you don’t have to carry the charging station along.
Another bonus point is that the 790cc can also be used while plugged in.
The automatic voltage adjustment (100-240V) means that you can use anywhere in the world and being a Li-Ion battery, you won’t have to worry about fully discharging or overcharging it.
Cleaning and maintenance
One of the things you can do to ensure a quality shave and to maintain your razor in top shape is to properly clean it after every use.
You can either manually clean it or use the automatic cleaning station.
With the shaver switched on, the shaving head can be rinsed directly under running tap water. For a more effective cleaning, it is recommended to use some liquid soap.
Another option is use the included brush to clean the inner area of the head. In order to do that, you must remove the foil and cutters assembly. You should not use the brush for cleaning the foil and cutters as they can easily be damaged.
Using the Clean & Renew Station
This unit automatically cleans, lubricates, charges and dries your shaver. Simply put, it is one of the best and most effective cleaning stations out there.
Compared to the ones from Panasonic for example, it quieter and faster (approximately 30 or 40 minutes, depending on the program). By using an alcohol based solution, it is also more effective for cleaning and sanitizing.
The shaver features a hygiene indicator alongside the one for battery status. When it is hygienically clean, all the 6 segments are shown.
After every use, one segment drops and it will only go up if you use the cleaning station, no matter how effective your manual cleaning is.
Since the shaving head assembly can’t be taken apart like on some other shavers, you can’t really clean it thoroughly just by rinsing it.
Braun recommends an automatic cleaning after every use, but you can probably get away with using it every two or three days.
When placing the razor in the station, it will automatically select the appropriate program depending on the hygiene status. There are three options available: short economical / normal / high intensive. The LED display on the base of the cleaning station shows you how many cleaning cycles you have left from the current cartridge and the type of cleaning that will be performed.
A full cycle that includes cleaning, lubricating and drying your razors takes about 30 to 40 minutes. In the first part of the process the shaver will switch on and off.
There is also the FastClean feature (25 seconds) that only cleans the razor without drying it.
Keep in mind that alcohol tends to evaporate pretty quick, so you’re not going to use the station for a longer period, remove the cartridge from it and put back the cap.
The shaving experience with the Series 7 790cc is one of the best you can get with an electric shaver. There’s no way to put this any other way. This goes for both the closeness of the shave and the comfort.
One of the most impressive aspects of the 790cc is how effective it is at cutting hair that lies flat on your skin or that grows in different patterns.
Anyone that has some experience with electric shavers knows that this is their Achille’s heel. By using the combo of micro pulsations, specially designed middle trimmer and foil, the 790cc manages to perform better than pretty much any other shaver.
The not so bulky head also makes it very maneuverable as opposed to other models that some may find a little bit unpractical.
When shaving it’s important not to apply too much pressure, but let it glide on your face. The only areas that may require a couple of additional passes are right below the jaw line or the neck.
It’s also a top performer when it comes to comfort: no pulling or tugging even when shaving every two or three days.
The long hair trimmer is also pretty good for all-around grooming and trims.
In the package you’ll find the following items:
- Series 7 790cc shaver
- Clean & Renew System
- Cleaning brush
- Electric cord (100V – 240V)
- 1 X Clean & Renew Cartridge
- Travel case
Replacement parts availability
When the foil and cutters assembly have worn out, a replacement indicator will show on the display of the shaver (after approx 18 months). It will light up for the next 7 shaves and then it will reset automatically. You can reset it manually by pushing the reset button with a ball pen for 3 seconds.
The cleaning cartridge must be replaced when the level indicator on the station blinks red. The cartridges can be bought in packs of 2, 3, 4 or 8 refills.
Both the cassette and the cleaning cartridges are available in retail stores, but buying them online from Amazon will save you some money as they are generally much cheaper:
Wrap-up. Who should buy it?
It goes without saying that men who want one of the closest shavings should definitely consider the 790cc. It is equally effective at shaving coarse and soft hair.
Men with sensitive skin that suffer from breakouts, irritation or ingrown hair should also consider this razor for their next upgrade. The setting for sensitive skin may come very handy in this situation.
Due to the incorporated technologies (powerful motor, the design of the foil) it is very good for shaving the head.
It is also quieter than most other foil shavers, so if noise is an issue you will appreciate the low humming of this razor as opposed to the loud, high pitched noise of others.
An obvious alternative would be the Series 7 760cc, which is basically the same shaver but comes in a different color, has a less capable LCD display and lacks the FastClean option of the Clean & Renew Station.
So if you don’t care about these things, you may as well buy the 760cc and save some money.
The 790cc can’t be used for wet shaving, even though it is fully washable. If you’re one of the wet shavers out there you might want to look elsewhere. Panasonic ES-LA93 would be a very good alternative, but only if you must wet shave; other than that, the Braun 790cc is slightly better in almost every aspect and it costs less.
[UPDATE] The new Braun Series 7 799cc can be used both wet & dry. Check out our review here.