CES 2021: Razer's Project Hazel is a high-tech N95 mask for COVID-19 times that looks neat too
It turns out there is some know-how that translates from gaming hardware to coronavirus protection.
Lori GruninSenior Editor / Advice
I've been reviewing hardware and software, devising testing methodology and handed out buying advice for what seems like forever; I'm currently absorbed by computers and gaming hardware, but previously spent many years concentrating on cameras. I've also volunteered with a cat rescue for over 15 years doing adoptions, designing marketing materials, managing volunteers and, of course, photographing cats.
ExpertisePhotography, PCs and laptops, gaming and gaming accessories
may sound like an odd fit for coronavirus-driven face mask protection, but based on its Project Hazel concept design for an N95-class face mask, it does bring some notable ideas for adding digital smarts to the table.
Watch this: Razer's CES 2021 concept pieces are a smart mask and the world's craziest gaming chair
For instance, it's got active ventilation and autosterilization, with a separate case that can charge it wirelessly and has a UV sterilizer. It uses replaceable filters and rechargeable ventilators on the pods, which is intended to make it a sustainable solution.
Razer's something extra adds lighting. It's not just for the pretty: The LEDs on the pods indicate charge status, and there are also internal LEDs to make your mouth visible in low light. And the pods have audio-processing algorithms built in to make your voice sound a lot clearer and more natural.
The mask has silicone around the edges for an airtight seal and adjustable ear loops, and you can adjust the amount of airflow for maximum comfort and protection. Plus, it comes in multiple sizes. And it's transparent so people can see your mouth move.
Razer's not the the first to reimagine the high-tech face mask -- there's this and this and this, for example -- and it won't be the last. But Razer does bring its particular design aesthetic to the drawing table.
Will it ever become a reality? Who knows. And even if it does, it likely wouldn't be affordable for the people who need it most. Still, Razer's heart (and brain) seems like it's in the right place.
The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.