The contemporary fashion realm, looking beyond the specific watch sector, has discerned the burgeoning influence of the 1970s' extravagant style, making its return to global collections. This 1970s renaissance isn't merely a carbon copy but is reimagined with current-day flair. Predictably, this reinvented 1970s design vibe has made its way back to the world of timepieces. The emergent Canadian label, Vieren, has fervently welcomed this fashion resurgence, prominently in its audio equipment-influenced golden variations. The brand's latest addition, Vieren Gold Sunray, epitomizes their homage to the Studio 54 epoch, combining a luxuriant gold-centric hue with delicate, thoughtfully crafted visuals.
Although watches with rectangular casings aren't rare, the Gold Sunray's 18K gold PVD-coated casing adopts a bolder, edgier design than most. Eschewing gentle curves and refined bevels, Vieren leans into the sheer brilliance of vast, unblemished gold expanses for its visual allure. With dimensions of 27mm in width and 41.5mm in length, the Gold Sunray isn't overwhelmingly large, but its pointed design and lustrous gold veneer command attention. The design's focus on flat features continues to its signed octagonal winder, compromising ease of use for an even greater luminosity. A petite, circular sapphire panel caps this case, revealing the standard circular mechanism inside – crafting a rectangular movement for such a casing might exceed this nascent brand's technical prowess and budget. Despite the Gold Sunray's less than optimal 30 meters water resistance, it is not intended as a sporty accessory.
Vieren remains unyielding in its audacious design for the Gold Sunray’s semi-transparent face. From the radiant brushed exterior to the minimalist polished hands, everything drips in gold, making it visually captivating, albeit slightly compromising readability. Two shiny 18K gold components – an etched minute scale on the external border and an inner date ring – are Vieren's attempts to counteract this. Both features are unquestionably eye-catching but don’t wholly rectify the design’s legibility issue. For instance, the outer ring is nearly invisible from standard viewing perspectives. The date display also tends to blend into the backdrop, save for a faint white indicator. However, once accustomed, this design proves fairly intuitive. It's worth noting that the primary appeal of the Vieren Gold Sunray isn’t functionality but its celebration of gold extravagance. Variations in gold shades across its components give it a richer, intricate look, with the interplay of different surface finishes creating a fascinating visual experience. The modest array of gems and mechanical parts peeking through the face’s central portion adds a touch of flair without revealing the underlying mechanism’s simplicity.
The engine driving the Gold Sunray is the ETA 2671 automatic mechanism. A diminutive counterpart to the prevalent ETA 2824 series, the 2671 offers nearly analogous features, including a 44-hour power reserve at a 28,800 bph frequency. During our examination, this mechanism maintained a decent accuracy of +8 seconds daily. Although the ETA 2671 is relatively compact, Vieren's embellishments, including radial Côtes de Genève on the engraved gold rotor, are noteworthy.
An undeniable factor enhancing the Gold Sunray's visual dynamism is its congruent 18K gold PVD-coated wristband. With its seven-link style and polished look, it mirrors the glitz Vieren aspires for, albeit with a few compromises. The bracelet is, in reality, a single-link design, feigning a multi-link appearance. This design choice reduces wear on the coating but restricts flexibility. Nevertheless, its comfort on the wrist is commendable, and its butterfly clasp is both sharp and reliable.
With the flamboyant 1970s aesthetic becoming a mainstay in mainstream fashion, it’s expected that the watch realm would offer its unique take. The exclusive Vieren Gold Sunray stands out as a fun, unreserved interpretation of this trend, merging a potent gold aesthetic with insightful design elements. A limited set of five pieces will be available, exclusively on the brand's online store. As of now, the Gold Sunray's retail price is $5,550 USD. For further details, prospective buyers are directed to Vieren's official site.