Mattel enjoyed success in the electronic game console market with its Intellivision product, which sold about 3 million units. The jump to home computers, then, seemed like a good idea. Radofin Electronics manufactured the Aquarius for Mattel and sold it overseas under that brand. Problems with FCC certification delayed the release of the Aquarius, and consumer indifference to the product forced Mattel to abandon it shortly after its release.
Mattel must have produced the Aquarius in numbers, because it is not difficult to find. Some of the items that Mattel promised for the Aquarius, such as the Master Expansion Unit that added two floppy drives and CP/M capability, never got beyond the prototype stage. A number of the software titles also never made it to market.
Mattel Aquarius (1983, home computer)
Original Retail Price: $200
Base Configuration: Z80A CPU, ROM cartridge slot, Mini Expander, 4K RAM (52K max), 8K ROM, cassette recorder, integral Chiclet-style keyboard, two game controllers, Microsoft BASIC, thermal printer, instruction cards
Video: 320 x 192 graphics, 16 colors
Size/Weight: 13 x 6 x 2 inches, 4.25 lbs.
Important Options: CP/M, Master Expansion Module, dual external 5.25-inch floppy disk drives, external modem