NuPhy Air75 V2 review: Mac-friendly mech keyboard looks nice, types nice

This compact, creative-friendly keyboard aimed at Mac users is mostly a hit.

A white NuPhy Air75 V2 keyboard on a wooden desk
(Image: © Future)

Our Verdict

Designed and optimised to fit right into an Apple-focused desk setup, the bright-looking, friendly-coloured NuPhy Air75 V2 takes a good keyboard and makes incremental improvements on both its first incarnation and the smaller Air60. Some users, especially those more au fait with full-size keyboards, may find the spacing a bit cramped, as the tenkey setup is wrapped into and around the main part of the keyboard, but with everything laid out intuitively, I quickly got used to it. Key travel and resistance is ample and tactile, while the low-profile keys should appeal to both those who are and aren't fans of 'big clunky keys', and makes for one of the better Magic Keyboard alternatives out there.

For

  • Beautifully designed
  • Responsive low-profile mechanical keys
  • Very customisable

Against

  • A bit cramped for space
  • Not the cheapest

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The NuPhy Air75 V2 arrived at my desk for testing carrying some quite heavy expectations. You see, NuPhy do good keyboards. We know; we've tested two of them just this year, the Air60 and Field75, and with that knowledge, as well as the promise of upgrades and further improvements indicated by the V2 tag. 

And after several weeks of using the Air75 as my daily keyboard for work and play, especially to see whether it could contend among the best keyboards for Mac users on the market, I can confirm that happily, NuPhy still do good keyboards.

A white NuPhy Air75 V2 keyboard on a wooden desk

(Image credit: Future)

NuPhy Air75 V2 review: Key specifications

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Switch type:Gateron Low-profile Mechanical (KS-33)
Layout:ANSI 75%
Number of keys:84
Compatible OS:macOS/Windows/Linux/Android/iOS
Battery capacity:4,000mAh (220hrs RGB off, 35-57 hrs RGB on)
Connection mode:2.4GHz, Bluetooth 5.1 or Wired (USB-C)
Polling rate:1,000Hz (2.4GHz/Wired); 125Hz (Bluetooth 5.1)
RGB backlit modes:40
Dimensions:316.4 mm x 132.5 mm x 13.5 mm
Weight:598g

NuPhy Air75 V2 review: Design and features

A white NuPhy Air75 V2 keyboard on a wooden desk

(Image credit: Future)

The NuPhy Air75 V2 looks very similar to the Air60 in the main (and offers a stark contrast to the bulkier, more angular Field75, which has the same ANSI 75% key layout). 

Made from an aluminium frame, with an ABS bottom case and Double-shot PBT keycaps, sitting on top of mechanical low-profile Gateron switches, the Air75 V2 feels reassuringly sturdy while remaining lightweight (unlike the bulky and heavy Field75), which should help it fit right into a Mac-focused ecosystem in particular. There are three colour options on offer, Ionic White (which is the one I received for testing), Basalt Black and Lunar Gray. The Ionic White and Lunar Gray are quite similar, apart from the grey keys on the Lunar Gray being slightly darker, and instead of a white frame, the Lunar Gray's is grey. The goth kid in me is most enticed by the striking Basalt Black look, though. All keyboards have a yellow spacebar, green Esc key and an orange Enter key, which lends the keyboard a very attractive accent that sets it apart from more monocolour rivals.

The keyboard has RGB LED backlighting, which can be configured in up to 40 ways, but for those with acute backlighting allergies, it can be turned off (and the keyboard will still look good). 

It's a wireless proposition, like the Air60 and Field75, but comes with a wire connected via USB-C. Without RGB backlighting, NuPhy quotes up to 220 hours of battery life (and from 35 with RGB on), which is more than a month of working hours, and somehow more than the Field75 manages, even though that one has a 4200mAh battery, while this one has a 4000mAh one. 

It can connect either via Wi-Fi, which can retain the 1000Hz polling rate offered by the wired mode, or Bluetooth 5.1 (which reduces the polling rate to 125Hz). 

The shape and size makes it really portable too, which is good if you want to carry your keyboard around for mobile work. 

NuPhy Air75 V2 review: Typing experience

A white NuPhy Air75 V2 keyboard on a wooden desk

(Image credit: Future)

When I used the Field75, which has the same ANSI 75% layout, with the tenkeys 'squished' into the main keys, arrow keys tucked under the Enter and right-hand Shift key, it took me a little while to adjust my typing to eliminate clumsy errors such as hitting the backslash key instead of Enter, and Enter or Up arrow instead of Shift, as well as feeling like I had to shift my fingers ever so slightly to the left of what I was used to in order to hit the right letters. 

And like with the Field75, my natural inclination towards full-size keyboards was evident early on, with quite a lot of typos and a reduced typing speed, but this remedied itself fairly quickly. 

The lower-profile switches on the Air75 V2 than the Field75 will be very much to the liking of those used to membrane keyboard users, for example, while keeping old-hat users like me happy enough with the mechanical resistance on offer by the responsive, tactile Gateron switches. The typing experience sits almost midway in between the flat Magic Keyboard (which is too flat for me) and tall '90s-style Cherry MX-equipped mech keyboards (which are too clunky for many). 

NuPhy Air75 V2 review: Price

A white NuPhy Air75 V2 keyboard on a wooden desk

(Image credit: Future)

The NuPhy Air75 V2 sits in between the Air60 and Field75 on the price scale, with an RRP of $119.95 at the time of writing. This is about $20 more than the smaller Air60 but a good $40 down from the more unorthodox, taller, blockier Field75. It's a bit more expensive than some rivals, such as Logitech, can offer, as well as an uptick from Apple's own Magic Keyboard, but what it offers is a more interesting look, high-quality, very durable switches and keys and a higher polling rate than many of these competing keyboards can achieve.

Should I buy the NuPhy Air75 V2?

A white NuPhy Air75 V2 keyboard on a wooden desk

(Image credit: Future)

With the NuPhy Air75 V2 improved from V1 in that it's now compatible with other operating systems than Windows, it's now a natural option for Mac users. It offers a nicely tactile typing experience, is extremely portable and is not too heavy either, all while looking appealing to both fans of big clunky clackers and neat, low-profile keyboards. Yes, it's a bit more expensive than some big-name competitors, and not everyone will be a fan of the condensed key layout (I'm looking at you, bottom right-hand corner), but if those aren't dealbreakers for you, the Air75 V2 a high-quality, very attractive-looking choice.

The Verdict
8

out of 10

NuPhy AIR 75

Designed and optimised to fit right into an Apple-focused desk setup, the bright-looking, friendly-coloured NuPhy Air75 V2 takes a good keyboard and makes incremental improvements on both its first incarnation and the smaller Air60. Some users, especially those more au fait with full-size keyboards, may find the spacing a bit cramped, as the tenkey setup is wrapped into and around the main part of the keyboard, but with everything laid out intuitively, I quickly got used to it. Key travel and resistance is ample and tactile, while the low-profile keys should appeal to both those who are and aren't fans of 'big clunky keys', and makes for one of the better Magic Keyboard alternatives out there.

Erlingur Einarsson
Tech Reviews Editor

Erlingur is the Tech Reviews Editor on Creative Bloq. Having worked on magazines devoted to Photoshop, films, history, and science for over 15 years, as well as working on Digital Camera World and Top Ten Reviews in more recent times, Erlingur has developed a passion for finding tech that helps people do their job, whatever it may be. He loves putting things to the test and seeing if they're all hyped up to be, to make sure people are getting what they're promised. Still can't get his wifi-only printer to connect to his computer.