Panasonic has built itself something of an empire in home electronics, but if this mega-powerful rotary drill is anything to go by its power tools division is a force to be reckoned with too.
Arriving in a military-style plastic case, the EY788 snaps together like a sniper rifle and has you locked, loaded and ready to drill in just two clicks.
Lock and load
It looks like Judge Dread’s plasma gun and feels heavy and robust thanks to the toughened plastic and rubber encasing the 4500 bpm motor. Panasonic describes the EY7880 as ‘lightweight’, but with 8.4 pounds of throbbing machine rattling your teeth, you’ll need both hands to hold it – hence the adjustable forward grip that makes you feel like you’re brandishing an Uzi.
Of course, the Panny can make mincemeat of wood and soft masonry, but tearing through concrete is this baby’s party trick. It’s one of the most powerful cordless drills around when you switch it from ‘Soft Hit’ mode to ‘Hard Hit’ and comes with two 28.8 Volt Li-ion battery packs to make sure the job gets finished. Unlike your average domestic cordless drill with a screw-tight chuck, this one has 0.75in SDS slot and lock mechanism to hold heavy-duty boring bits.
It took us about fifteen minutes, with pauses, to bore clean through an external wall, but it also has some other nice features too. The chisel mode is useful for shaping paving slabs and there’s a handy LED headlight for working in dark spaces. That attachment on the top isn’t your crosshair by the way, but a depth rod to prevent you drilling too deep and the trigger is dust proof, which is sure to expand this drill’s lifespan.
Also included in the case is an optional dust cover that ingeniously fits between the bit and the chuck and channels the dust into a plastic pipe. Neat.
As Panasonic’s top-of-the-range drill, the beefy EY7880 has all the tricks and much more power than your average cordless. If the job calls for concrete or heavy masonry mashing, this is the ideal tool.