Less than one year after the launch of the Arc 5 revision G, Panasonic just announced the new 2022 generation, called the Arc 5 (Lamdash 5) PRO.
And while this appears to be just the usual incremental update that Panasonic has been doing for years with the Arc 5, what sets it apart is the inclusion of the PRO in the name.
From smartphones to electric shavers, everyone wants to capitalize on this word. If it’s a Pro model, it has to be extra special compared to the regular one, right?
Braun also did it a while back with the Series 9 Pro, so this could very well be in response to that.
In this article I’ll take a close look at what this new Arc 5 Pro (revision H) has to offer and also compare it to the previous Arc 5 models.
Table of Contents
Arc 5/Lamdash 5 Pro (revision H) — a short overview
Having tested pretty much all Arc 5 generations, I think I have a pretty good idea of what to expect in terms of shaving performance, even though I haven’t actually used an Arc 5 / Lamdash 5 Pro.
The presentation page on Panasonic.jp lists June 1st as the date when the shavers will be available for purchasing, so my detailed review will come later on.
But until then, here’s all you need to know about the new 2022 Panasonic Arc 5 / Lamdash 5 Pro (aka revision H).
Let me start by quickly going over the terminology.
The revision H moniker is just an unofficial way of referring to this particular 2022 Arc 5 update.
The model names of most Arc 5 models in a revision include a certain letter and Panasonic has been using this naming scheme consistently since 2015 when they introduced the revision A.
With the 2022 revision (aka the Lamdash 5/Arc 5 Pro), that letter is H (the previous one was G).
Also, Panasonic uses the term LAMDASH instead of Arc when referring to the shavers intended for the Japanese domestic market.
I tend to stick to the Arc 5 name on this website as that one is a lot more familiar to users worldwide.
But in essence, both terms refer to the same shavers, so it doesn’t really matter which one you’re seeing listed.
Further reading: I wrote a very comprehensive Arc 5 comparison guide where I compare in great detail all the generations and revisions ever released.
You can check it out if you want to really get into the specifics of a certain Arc 5 model.
Panasonic Arc 5 (Lamdash 5) Pro features
Let’s start by going over the main features of the 2022 Panasonic Arc 5 Pro.
I’ll try to keep this part really short and to the point and clear of any marketing fluff (the official presentation page is quite extensive in that regard).
1. 5-blade shaving system
The new Arc 5 Pro continues to be a family of foil electric shavers with 5 active, individual cutting elements.
This was the highest number of blades on any foil shaver until last year with the introduction of the Arc 6.
Just like the previous models, the Pro Arc 5 has 4 foil cutters and one slit trimmer.
The foils cut short stubble at skin level, while the specially designed trimmer (gold) is supposed to capture and pre-trim longer, flat-lying hairs that also grow in different directions.
Just as before, we have two removable inner blades, while the other three are integrated into the foil block itself.
The two comfort rollers are also present and will allow the head to glide easier on the skin, especially during a dry shave:
Fun fact: the foil and inner cutters of the 2022 Panasonic Arc 5 Pro are the same as on the last year’s revision G (you can read my full review of it here). The part number of the foil and blades set is ES9040.
This detail is in my opinion the most relevant in order for us to get an idea of the performance of the new 2022 Lamdash 5 Pro.
The most important part of the shaver, which comes in contact with the skin and does the actual cutting, is carried over from the previous non-pro generation.
That one (the revision G) was actually an excellent performer and in my opinion the best Arc 5 yet (although the improvements over the older revisions were minor), so the Pro models should be at least as good.
That said, I am really skeptical about any significant performance leap since again the cutting system of the Arc 5 Pro is identical.
2. Fast linear-drive motor
Panasonic is in my opinion the electric shaver brand with the best motors in the industry.
It’s just way ahead of the competition in this regard.
Their 14 000 CPM (cycles per minute) linear drive motor has been continuously refined over the years and its size has been reduced considerably.
In fact, the engineers were able to place it into the shaving head itself, not in the body of the shaver like Braun does.
This comes with a host of advantages as the power goes directly to the blades and there’s no complex linkage involved, so fewer things that are prone to break.
This motor is fast, powerful, has a lot of torque and is also reliable.
Unsurprisingly, it was also carried over from the previous Arc 5 models and in this regard, I really don’t have anything against it.
It’s a proven design that works reliably and ensures excellent performance.
3. Flexible shaving head
The shaving head of the Arc 5 generations in recent years has been really impressive (on paper) with the way it can flex in every possible direction.
For the Lamadash 5 Pro, Panasonic went with the same system of the previous generation (called Close contact 5D head) and it can move front and back, left to right, up and down, but also slides and twists back and forth.
As mentioned earlier, it all seems really impressive, but in practice, it doesn’t really improve the experience to a significant degree.
This is an area where Panasonic could really learn a thing or two from Braun with their very simple, but effective flexing shaving heads.
The range of motion is limited in the case of the Arc 5 Pro and the 5 shaving elements, while being able to flex independently, it takes a lot of pressure to move them (you’ll never be pressing the shaving head this hard during use).
So just like the other two key features (motor and outer foil), the flexing of the head is also identical to what we had on the previous Arc 5 generation.
4. Bubble making mode (New)
Here’s the only new feature that Panasonic introduced with this Arc 5 Pro line: a bubble making mode.
Precisely, in the case of the wet/dry models, you can start the shaver in a special mode that makes the blades vibrate really fast and lather soap/lotion so you can wet shave with it.
I really can’t say that I find it particularly useful or exciting.
Palm and face lathering shaving cream is by far the best way when wet shaving with an electric razor.
But this is the only true novelty of the Lamdash 5 Pro (also present on the Lamdash 6 Pro shavers).
As mentioned earlier, the dry only models do not get this feature.
5. Automatic cleaning stations
Three of the new Panasonic Arc 5 Pro models include an automatic cleaning and charging station.
And while functionally the stations appear to be exactly the same as before, there is a visual difference.
The new stations of the Pro Arc 5 now come in an all-black colorway which looks really sleek in my opinion.
All the previous stations came in a black and silver color scheme. So this is more like a visual update than a functional one, but still worth mentioning.
6. Basic LED displays
The new 2022 Arc 5 Pro models come with either a 5 or 3-stage battery level indicator (just like the revision G).
This is a downgrade compared to the older revisions (from F down) where more capable displays were being used on the range-topping models.
Those were capable of showing the remaining battery charge in 5% increments and would also display the elapsed time.
The displays fitted to the 2022 Arc 5 PRO shavers are pretty basic and definitely the result of a cost-cutting decision.
7. All-plastic body
Also on the subject of cutting costs, none of the Arc 5 Pro models come with aluminum bodies.
In the past, at least one of the models in a revision would come in a premium brushed aluminum body. Panasonic ditched that with last year’s revision G and it did the same with the 2022 Arc 5 Pro.
There isn’t anything wrong with using plastic — in fact, Panasonic is the best in my opinion when it comes to build quality, but it’s a shame we do not get the option of buying a premium build for some extra money.
Side note: if you want an Arc 5 with a metal body, the best option is currently the ES-LV9Q from the revision C. You should be able to buy one regardless of where you live.
8. Misc features
The rest of the Panasonic Arc 5 Pro features are directly taken from the previous models:
- AI shaving sensor
- waterproof for easy cleaning
- 3-minute quick charge function
- automatic cleaning station (certain models)
- cordless only or corded & cordless use
- automatic voltage converter (can be used worldwide)
Panasonic Arc 5 Pro (2022) model comparison
There are 5 shaver models in this 2022 Panasonic Arc 5 Pro lineup. Here is a comparison table that showcases the main differences between them:
As you can see, the most important differences relate to the inclusion of a cleaning station and whether the model is a wet/dry or dry only shaver.
This is important because the dry only models will also work with the cord plugged in, while the wet/dry ones can only be operated cordlessly.
To some users, being able to use a shaver while charging is a must-have feature, so there are two such models: the ES-LV7H (includes a cleaning station) and the ES-LV5H (no cleaning station).
All the shavers (both the wet/dry and dry only) are however waterproof and can be easily cleaned with water.
The shaving performance is identical throughout the entire Lamdash 5 Pro range.
As mentioned earlier, only the wet/dry Arc 5 Pro razors feature the new bubble making mode that you would use when shaving wet.
Some of the downgrades include the less capable display, all-plastic bodies, cloth pouches and the lack of the smart lock feature.
For example, with the previous revisions, from A to F, you had the option of buying at least one fully loaded, premium model.
These downgrades that started with last year’s revision G do not however impact the shaving performance — it will be just as good.
But given the obvious cost-cutting measures, it should be reflected in the price of the shavers as well.
If the 2022 Panasonic Arc 5 Pro models will end up costing less than the previous models, I think there’s nothing to complain about.
Is the Arc 5 Pro actually better than the regular Arc 5?
Considering what has actually changed in the case of the Panasonic Arc 5 Pro compared to the older Arc 5 generations, I think it’s safe to say that No, it is not better.
In fact, if we objectively compare them to some of the older revisions (particularly C, D, E and F), the Pro Arc 5 is a step down because of the aforementioned minuses.
However, they do come with the newer and revised foil that debuted on the revision G which is slightly more comfortable and a bit better with longer hairs than the previous iterations.
And that’s what really matters for the actual shaving performance.
I can confidently say the Arc 5 Pro will be absolutely identical with regards to closeness and comfort to the previous revision G (introduced in 2021).
And even the older revisions are pretty much the same performance-wise, the differences between the foils being marginal.
On top of that, you can actually upgrade any Arc 5 to the latest foil (more on that later on).
The 2022 Panasonic Arc 5/Lamdash 5 Pro will most likely be exclusive to the Japanese market.
So we won’t be getting an official global/European release which is always a lot more practical than importing the shaver from Japan (because of warranty issues and the added shipping and customs fees).
If for some reason you really want an Arc 5 Pro, you will be able to order one starting in June 2022.
The shavers will likely be available on Amazon.jp and on other major online shops from Japan like Rakuten.
If the vendor does not ship to your location, you can use a proxy service like forward2me.com for a rather reasonable fee.
I’ve used them in the past and they are very reliable (I am not endorsed by them in any way).
Should you buy the Panasonic Lamdash 5 Pro?
While I’m sure the performance will be just as impressive as before, I really can’t find any compelling reason for buying a Panasonic Arc 5 Pro over any of the previous iterations, especially from the revision C and up.
A lower cost would indeed be a solid reason to get one, but we do not have any price info yet.
And considering that these Lamdash Pro models will only be available in Japan starting in June, I think there are definitely better alternatives out there if you want a top-of-the-line Arc 5 shaver.
Let’s check out some of these options.
As I hinted throughout this post, some of the older Arc 5 revisions which are really just as good should strongly be considered.
In my opinion the ES-LV9Q from the revision C is really hard to beat.
It comes with a cleaning station and hard leather case, it features an aluminum body and the better display and the price is usually quite reasonable, especially in Europe.
In the USA it wasn’t officially released, but you can still get it on sites like Amazon.com.
The closeness and comfort are in my opinion extremely similar to the revisions G and H (Arc 5 Pro), but as I mentioned previously, you can actually upgrade the foil to the one used by those.
It will fit perfectly.
Further reading: You can check out my complete Arc 5 foil compatibility guide for all the details.
You can even buy any of the Arc 5 models from the C, D, E or F revisions (the performance is basically the same) depending on your needs.
For example, maybe you want an Arc 5 with a metal body that works corded and cordless and doesn’t have a cleaning station.
You will still need to import it from Japan, but at least you can buy it right now.
Again, you can check out my Arc 5 buying guide to find a model suitable for your needs.
Finally, let’s not neglect the older generation Arc 5 models that cost a bargain compared to these new Japan-exclusive shavers and still shave phenomenally.
They feature the same powerful 14 000 CPM model and the ES-LV65-S for example even comes with the better display and the ability to turn off the shaving sensor.
It’s really difficult to find better shavers at this price point.
And finally, while they do come with the older foil (no comfort rollers) that is a bit more aggressive, the closeness is just as good and again, you will be able to upgrade the foil to the latest ones if you choose so.
In conclusion, the latest 2022 Arc 5 Pro just feels a bit underwhelming.
There’s really nothing Pro about it compared to any of the older Arc 5 models and I think most users will be better off buying some of the alternatives mentioned above.
The Lamdash 5 Pro family is basically a rebranded 2021 revision G. Apart from the gimmicky bubble-making mode and an all-black cleaning system, we’re really not getting anything else.
For me, a very reasonable price would be the only thing that would make me recommend them over other (older) Arc 5 models.
However, I am skeptical about it since at least in theory, Panasonic considers the Lamdash 5 Pro their flagship line of 5 blade shavers, so the price will likely be premium as well.
Over to you now: what do you think about the 2022 Panasonic Arc 5/Lamdash 5 PRO? Will you be getting one?
If you have any other questions, make sure to post them in the comments below.