For every chef, the Japanese knife is the most important member of their kitchen fleet. You can use your knife without being in the kitchen, but without the best Japanese knife sharpener, you are almost 1 step closer to losing your champion.
You can take as sharp a knife as you want, it will be blunt at some point either after the first month or even after a year of purchasing it. However, the best Japanese knives could easily last at least for decades, if not for a lifetime.
But, if you are not maintaining it perfectly, you are just ruining your investment, by throwing it into the trash sooner or later. And of course, being a professional or chef enthusiast, you will never want to throw your buddy in the garbage.
To get the most out of your new or a bit old yet the best Japanese knife, you should never underestimate the need for a Best Japanese Knife Sharpener out there. Otherwise, these knives will become dangerous as they could also chip. You don’t need any sharpener unless your knife is very old and broken that needs to be disposed off. However, you do need to know how to safely dispose of your old knives.
Just to encounter the knife’s dulling problems due to their frequent usage, the only economical, and the best solution is to get a knife sharpener, that would assist you in that. They will make the knives to cut & perform effectively.
Our Top 3 Picks
- Material: Diamond
- Color: Gray
- Weight: 67.2 ounces
- Dimensions: 10 x 4.25 x 4.25 inches
- Manufacturer: Edgecraft
- Material: Diamond-Coated Stainless Steel
- Color: Gray
- Weight: 80 ounces
- Dimensions: 5.5 x 12 x 6.25 inches
- Manufacturer: Edgecraft
- Material: Synthetic
- Color: Grey/Yellow
- Weight: 3.52 ounces
- Dimensions: 10.75 x 2.5 x 1.19 inches
- Manufacturer: Smith’s
What are Stages in the Japanese Knife Sharpeners?
As we will be extensively using the “Stage” term, so it’s better to first clear it to you, what does the stage mean, in the knife sharpeners.
Most knife sharpeners come in different stages. These stages simply determine, how much & which level of sharpening you should opt for. For a very dull knife, go for the sharpeners with at least 3 stages (better to choose 4 stages sharpeners).
On a very quick note, the coarse the stage, the more material it will remove, & it will take more time to sharpen that knife. However, the fine the stage, it will effectively polish the knife, & removes the scratches, to make it razor-sharp.
What does each stage do?
- Stage 1: Rough grinding
- Stage 2: Burr & Chip Removal
- Stage 3: Honnig & Sharpening
- Stage4: Stropping/Finishing/Polishing
A four-stage sharpener is best for dullest knives, a three-stage sharpener is best for dull knives and a two-stage sharpener is best for casual & household usage.
Here is a detailed guide on How to Sharpen Kitchen Knives
Best Japanese Knife Sharpener | At A Glance
|Chef’s Choice Trizor XV EdgeSelect Pro Electric Sharpener
|Chef’s Choice 463 Pronto Manual Knives Fast Sharpener
|Chef’s Choice AngleSelect Electric Knife Sharpener
Best 4 Stage
|ZWILLING J.A. Henckels 4-Stage Pull Through Knife Sharpener
Serrated & Straight
|Chef’sChoice Hone Electric Knife Sharpener – For Serrated Edges
|Chef’sChoice ProntoPro Hone Manual Knife Sharpener
|Wusthof Precision Edge 4 Stage Knife Sharpener
|Presto 08800 EverSharp Electric Knife Sharpener
|Shinkansen Water Sharpener
Adjustable & Manual
|Smith’s 50264 Adjustable Manual Knife Sharpener
Best Japanese Knife Whetstone
|KEEN BEST Whetstone Set 2 Side
Best Japanese Knife Sharpener | Our Best Picks & Review
For your ease, we have divided this list into two main categories. These sharpeners are partitioned in manual, and electric versions. As not everyone has the same taste, both categories own at least four different options.
Best Electric Japanese Knife Sharpeners
So, let’s break the list with the most popular and the best Japanese knife sharpener out there in the market. This sharpening system belongs to Chef’s Choice which is a launch of the year 2003.
Wow, this is that much old, & established player in the market.
The system comes in two variants with two different stages. One comes in a 2-stage system, while the other one is offered in 3-stage ones, that is recommended by the way, as you are going to get a complete set for your knives.
This system is ideal to turn your large bevel blades into the shorter ones, most probably turning a 20° knife into a 15° bevel blade, which gives an exceptional sharpness. As this is somewhat of Japanese standard, it will surely perform this.
This specific system consists of 3 stage sharpening, & out of these three stages, the first two ones are using a completely diamond abrasive into it, that builds a decent burr on the surface of the cutting edges, without any damage.
For the final, and stropping stage, the system gives your knife enough flexibility in its abrasives that results into a decent polish of the blade. Still, there are some chances of scratches, but you can encounter it, by first tying an idle knife on it.
Also, the machine seems to produce less noise, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that it is completely silent. The range is somewhere 75dB, but you can lower it down depending upon your skills. However, it will still sound a little bit for sure.
Trizor XV is mainly meant for household and semi-professional usage. But, I have personally seen this guy in the hands of Pro chefs in restaurants as well. So, technically, there is no such limitation in terms of skill level.
Overall, the machine is durable, easy to use & lightweight that only weighs 2 Kg, or even less. You can get done with your knife in less than 3 minutes, even for the very first time. Better to practice it first on a completely trial knife to master this.
- A Very Responsive machine
- Extremely sharpens the knife
- Durable, & lightweight machine
- Less time is required to sharpen
- A wonderful sharpening quality
- Could left very light scratches
We have got you covered with the Chef’s Choice device, which is electric once again. This one has a launch for the year 2008, & it has already earned a good reputation and trust of several professional chefs, all across the United States.
When comparing it to the Trizor XV EdgeSelect system on the first spot, this system here is an improvised version of it, with slight yet effective changes that have taken place. Just, don’t pull the blade too fast in the stages, & that is it.
This system exclusively comes in only one variant, and that too in three stages mechanism. It is a complete set for your carbon steel and some specific high-quality cutlery steel Japanese knives.
With its fine grit, of above 1000 grit, the knife gives you a very decent & attractive surface, which also repairs the pre-made scratches on its surface. It is a double bevel machine that can transform both your single and double bevel knives.
Just like the other ones, this knife is also responsible for turning your knives with 20° and greater angles, to truly Japanese knives that feature a 15° angle. You can not just repair your knives, but you can also transform your existing knives as well.
With this machine, you can get it done with the sharpening process in less than a minute or two. And, that even too for the first time. Later, once you get used to it, 60 seconds will be more than enough for it.
Though the machine can also be used with serrated blades, we will never strongly recommend these knives with it, as we have got another great alternative for this thing. And that too in three stages. Rest is your own choice.
Last thing, this machine is also pretty lightweight, or using the same construction and weight, that was available in Trizor XV’s case. Only missing thing, that it doesn’t come with precision guides, but it has an alternative on the next spot by the way.
- Very easy to use device
- Fast yet effective thing
- Exceptional sharpness
- Best 3 Stage sharpener
- For a reasonable price
- Not for improving the edge
Chef’s Choice again, with its most awaited yet good sharpening system, that is ideal for kitchen professionals, and knife sharpening service providers. By the way, this system is a launch for the year 2008, & it is somewhat popular out there also.
As we were missing the diamond abrasives in the sharpening mechanism in the Zwilling’s case, Chef’s Choice has fulfilled this thing in this case. So, you will be dealing with almost any sort of Japanese knife out there in the market.
Out of these three stages, the knife when set at the first stage, the machine eventually produces a burr on the blade, if you keep feeding your blade into the stage, for at least 10 times, right after each other, after an interval of second in it.
When you are all done with the first stage, it’s time to cross the knife with the second stage for at least half the time of what you did for the first stage. Now, your knife is going through a honing process, which is somewhat sharpened now.
This is an electric knife sharpener, that you can use for your double bevel, and serrated knives as well, without hustling or ruining your blade knives. It is using a three-stage sharpening system that doesn’t need to be discussed again.
But, if you are just stepping directly here, with our At a Glance list at the top, we have to tell you about this. These three-stage machines that work on electric power efficiently turn your dull knife, into the sharpest ones, out of the box.
On the last step of 3-stage sharpening, after completion of 5 more strokes into the guides, you will now have a sharp, & polished blade that is now free of scratches, and dull edges. You can now simply use this knife in your kitchen.
Again, you have got a set with a 15-20° sharp knife blade, that can now cut even your fingers, in a matter of seconds. What makes the sharpness the best one is its 100% diamond abrasives.
- Effective sharpening system
- Also sharpens serrated blade
- A bit heavy yet durable body
- Micro-polish 3-stages system
- Completely Diamond Abrasives
- An expensive knife sharpener
Only Presto sharpener on the list, and that even too the electric one. To be honest, this is the first electric knife sharpener after a long time. The last one before this was at the 5th spot on the list of the Best Japanese Knife Sharpener.
This specific knife sharpener is a launch of the year 2007. Strong work pays off, and this is the case with this sharpener, as it has earned more than 10,000 positive reviews from US chefs.
This easy to use knife sharpener is using stages of sharpening. Here, the construction is very simple, so there is no need to dive deeper into it. The machine works on a 120-Volt supply, which is good for the United States structure.
By far, this is the first and maybe the only sharpener that has got a precision guide into its wheel, that helps you and take a look, where your knife is going. This is somewhat missing in all others, as you will be judging it first yourself.
The sharpening is effective, which creates a very maneuverable and ultra-sharp blade, that you can simply use to carry on with the pending tasks. Though the angle is not adjustable, you get what you paid for with this little thing.
- Gives razor-sharp edge
- Precise sharpening device
- Exceptionally the best one
- 2 -stage sharpening method
- A budget knife sharpener
- Motor could be powerful
Best Manual Japanese Knife Sharpeners
The successor to our best Japanese knife sharpener again belongs to Chef’s Choice fleet, which is manual this time by the way. This good boy is a launch of the year 2009, & it is now the 145th best knife sharpener out there.
With this set, you no longer need to build burr, as this is not required at all for hardened knives, and it is rarely possible. Here, you have to hone the knife at the first stage, and later stropping it on the second stage, and you are almost all set.
This is that simple. It also makes the edge of your knife to perform outstanding. There is still a chance left for slight scratches, but stropping is effective enough to tackle these things, without removing material a lot.
463 Pronto is using completely diamond abrasive which makes the sharpening process more effective. Even the wheel is also using diamond, instead of ceramic coating, to give you the best value for money.
Last thing, the sharpener is the lightweight guy that holds its durability and quality for a long time. You can easily sharpen your Santoku, Gyuto, and Japanese knives with serrated blades effectively.
If you have got a stainless steel knife, that requires additional knife sharpening skills in a careful manner, this manual knife sharpener is going to shine then. The mechanism is simple, and it has got two stages of sharpening, making it easier.
Usually, the stainless steel knives are heat treated and encoded in the solution at the same time. This leads to an exceptional sharpness along with the durability out of the box. But sometimes, this could even become a potential threat as well.
Because, these knives are exceptionally durable, but hard at the same time. These knives are rated for more than 60 HRC on the Rockwell hardness scale that tells us about its immense hardness level. Here, manual machines are the best thing.
This set is meant for maintaining your edge to 15° which is a good standard for Japanese knives, that gives you an exceptional and smooth cutting experience once sharpens perfectly.
- Best manual sharpener
- An easy to use machine
- Exceptional sharpening
- 100% Diamond Abrasives
- Fast 2-stages sharpening
- Not for thick blade knives
Just like the Best Japanese Knife Brands, we have also planned to add another good brand with its good sharpener that makes a strong complement to your requirements. ZWILLING by HENCKELS is on the list with its 4-stage sharpener.
This set is a launch of the year 2017. Here on the list, this is the very first of the few 4-stage knife sharpeners. So, let’s take a detailed yet skimmed look on this thing.
Besides being the first 4 stage sharpener, this is also marked as the first ceramic sharpener, as there is nothing called a diamond. The reason for that, it is the first budget one on the list, and you can never expect it in that case.
The set is completely manual, and this is why we do recommend it ideal for beginners, casual, and home chefs to get started with. Even if you have the dullest knife in your fleet, this is going to sharpen that, and this is why it is 4-stages ones.
Here, the device provides you with the coarse and fine grit, that gives you a decent sharpening result on just a few strokes. But yes, it is going to take your time on the worst knife that you had in your kitchen.
This has two bevels or sides. One out of these features a 10-degree angle, which is ideal for western, (American, and European knives), while the other one is a good match for Asian knives, which mainly includes the Japanese knives.
Overall, this set is worth the price, which is nothing when compared to others. Personally speaking, this is a good choice to kick-start sharpening the knives in your collection. The body and construction is good enough to last for a long time.
- Ultimate finger protection
- Good for edges repairing
- Double-sided sharpening
- A budget knife sharpener
- Up to 15° angle sharpening
- Couldn’t sharpen serrated
Chef’s Choice again, yet for the last time with its another good yet manual sharpening system, known as Pronto Pro. Currently, it is the 97th best knife sharpener, and it is a launch of the year 2012.
If you want a three stages sharpener, that is a great value for money but that in the manual case for your stainless or expensive steel knives. It is a good choice in that case. This looks marvelous in its black and grey color, to be honest.
This three-stage system is confident enough to provide you with a classic 15° angle of your blade. Even if you have an extremely dull knife, it is going to sharpen that like a razor, that you will never forget, though it will take some time to get it done.
Not only is the system three-stage, but it is also using the best abrasive material, that is completely diamond extraction. This helps you achieve the greatest possible sharpening, that is possible nowhere else for this price.
Do you know, you can sharp your knife without a Sharpener? Here’s How:
The initial two stages use a 100% diamond abrasive that transforms the dull blade into new ones, in its honing and burr stage. To remove the scratches produced there, the machine is loaded with 99% diamond abrasive at the last stage.
This provides a good and shiny polish on the blade in the last phase. Still, this can never beat the class of the best electric Japanese knife sharpener’s finishing, and polishing reach. This one here is still maneuverable by the way.
As this one is a completely manual sharpener, this is going to take your time and some sort of effort to get used to it. But, to keep you confident and comfortable, this system gives you a soft handle that lowers the stress on your palm & fingers.
- Up to 15-20° blade angle
- Along with two bevels
- With Diamond Abrasives
- Very Effective sharpening
- Best for Dalstrong & Shun
- Polishing could be better
A German brand, with its one of the best 4 stage knife sharpeners. This system is a launch of the year 2010, & it is currently ranking as the 34th best knife sharpener out there. A very reasonable price along with maneuverable sharpening.
If you just want to get rid of the traditional and time-consuming whetstones, then it is a better and reasonable alternative to get started with. This is a completely manual yet second best 4 stage Japanese knife sharpener on this list.
This machine is loaded with 4 stages, out of which two of those are fine, while the rest of the stages are coarse grit. The coarse grits are responsible for the initial transformation of your knife, which starts building burr, and later the honing.
Moving to the next phase, which consists of its last two stages. This part of the device is responsible for stropping and polishing the knife, at its best possible performance. Though the performance is good, there’s still room for improvement.
For your carbide, & ice-hardened blade’s Japanese knife, this is a perfect match, to be honest. Being a budget guy, this one holds ceramic rods for honing, which is widely accepted both in terms of performance and price.
Moreover, you can also sharpen both your single and double bevel knives. The longer the knife, the more it takes to sharpen. While, the longer the blade, the more sharp, and versatile it is going to be.
Overall, this guy from Wusthof is nicely built, which gives a decent durability out of the box. The plastic base acts as a support, and the handle is also pretty smooth, and a comfortable one. Yes, it is very lightweight, that only weighs 300 grams.
- Best for Santoku, & Gyuto
- Hard carbide steel blades
- Rubber, yet a very soft grip
- Sharpens pretty effectively
- A reasonable price & quality
- Not for ceramic knives
The only sharpener that comes with a variety of adjustable sharpening angles, that is not just limited to your Japanese knives, as it was a context of this list.
Along with this, the knife is a launch of the year 2012. Moreover, this is a very lightweight knife, with just 100 grams of gross weight.
This boy comes with three stages just like the other ones on the list. These stages are meant for sharpening the knives coarse, fine, and an exclusive position for serrated knives, which is a really good thing to have.
With this sharpener, you are supposed to sharpen a variety of knives, on a variety of angles on each side. Currently, the knob is responsible for adjusting the wheels that range from 14-degrees to up to 24 degrees on its single side alone.
Not only that, but the sharpener can also be used to sharpen the knives at an extra-fine grit out of the box. Though it will take some time due to very little removal, it ultimately results in a decent and well-polished spine of the blade.
Yes, the serrated sharpening is limited to a fixed angle, as optimizing it on several other angles would lead to breaking the serrations that are already done on the blade. So, it’s a very good cure to such potential threats out there.
Overall, both the build quality and performance is more than enough for the price with this little yet effective thing. You can now re-shape your knife at its best performance to make it ready for its next journey, in a matter of minutes.
- Two main sharpening stages
- Adjustable sharpening angles
- A Very lightweight sharpener
- For single and double bevels
- On a reasonable offer price
- Adjustment has some lash
Last but not the least, this is the first and only water sharpener on this entire list. This one is a successful launch of 2007, & works effectively for the price. There is a tiny little wheel compartment, where you need to pour some water.
You don’t have to drink this, as this is going to work as a coolant, that would be reducing the friction, and thermal issues in its ceramic wheels. This is a two-stage sharpener, that only consists of coarse and fine stages.
As you already knew the working mechanism, we should not discuss it once again. The build quality of this thing is optimal, that would last for a couple of years for sure. Moreover, the lightweight design makes this thing a portable one.
Last thing, you can sharpen both the single and double bevel knives, which is a good one to have. The sharpener is capable enough of turning the knives to 15° degrees, which is ideal for the best Japanese knives.
- Ceramic sharpening wheels
- A lightweight construction
- Water prevents heat issues
- For a very reasonable price
- The best one for regular use
- Edge is not the best one
- Could be a 3-stage system
Best Japanese Whetstone Knife Sharpener
So, you don’t want to lose the traditional heritage of Japanese knife sharpening techniques. And, this is why we have included one of the best Whetstone in this list, to give you a wide range of effective selections.
This boy from Keen Best is a launch of the year 2020, & it is currently ranking as the 10th best sharpening stone. In such a short amount of time, this one has successfully earned a good reputation in the market.
Now, there are no such problems with whetstones, despite them being a time-consuming process. It is recommended for casual, and beginners to first maneuver whetstone sharpening, as they give almost the same sharpness.
Not only are they effective ones, but they are also very affordable, as you can get these stones in less than a hundred bucks, and maybe even less than this. Though soaking takes time, it will eventually get the work done.
Grit & Performance:
This is a silicon carbide whetstone, which is one of the best companions of carbon steel knives. The stone comes in two different sizes on each side. At the moment, this set holds 2 stones, along with grits of 400, 1000, 3000, 8000 on each.
The entire process from soaking to final polishing can take up to 40 minutes, which is a lot more than these machine knife sharpeners. Believe us or not, this is still very fast, as some whetstone can take up to 2 hours in just soaking time.
With this, you can maintain your various Japanese knives, like Gyuto, Santoku, Petty, & even the cleavers effectively. To prevent vibration and excess movement due to water and friction, this comes with rubber in their wooden stand.
See a detailed guide here: Best Whetstones for Japanese knives
- Along with an angle guide
- The best sharpening stone
- A Very effective sharpness
- Reasonably priced stones
- Also best for professionals
- Time-consuming sharpening
Best Japanese Knife Sharpener | Frequently Asked Questions
The Bottom Line | Best Japanese Knife Sharpener
Spending a couple of hundred bucks on your best Japanese knives is not just a walk in the park. Instead, you should equally take care of what you have invested, by maintaining your knife with the Best Japanese Knife Sharpeners.
Most probably, you will be using your knife for at least 4-5 hours per day in your professional journey. That knife will eventually get dull if you do not sharpen it. Or, it gets useless slowly, that will be just a piece of metal & nothing else.
Now, purchasing a knife sharpener is not just filling the formalities. Instead, you should carefully make a purchasing decision. Some sharpeners are not enough to make the edge, or some could not be able to sharpen your stainless steel knife.
Worry not, as we have taken the task of finding the Best Japanese Knife Sharpeners, for our loyal readers, professional & amateur cooks. Now, you just need to follow this list, to get the ideal companion for your Best Japanese knife.