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RetroSound Santa Cruz M4

Digital media receiver designed for select 1988-1994 GM trucks and SUVs — does not play CDs

Item # 068SANTACR

If you own a workhorse GM or Chevy truck or SUV from the late 80's or early 90's, you're probably very familiar...

Find what Fits your vehicle

If you own a workhorse GM or Chevy truck or SUV from the late 80's or early 90's, you're probably very familiar...


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About the RetroSound Santa Cruz M4

Perk up your older GM truck or SUV

If you own a workhorse GM or Chevy truck or SUV from the late 80's or early 90's, you're probably very familiar with its unique factory radio layout. Vintage radio manufacturer RetroSound had that layout in mind when they built their Santa Cruz M4 digital media receiver. Designed to fit in the AM/FM tuner location in the dash console and retain the factory look, the Santa Cruz ups the ante with modern technology like Bluetooth® for wireless phone convenience, USB ports for digital music, and an option to add satellite radio. And RetroSound backs up this radio with a 2-year warranty.

Perk up your older GM truck or SUV

If you own a workhorse GM or Chevy truck or SUV from the late 80's or early 90's, you're probably very familiar with its unique factory radio layout. Vintage radio manufacturer RetroSound had that layout in mind when they built their Santa Cruz M4 digital media receiver. Designed to fit in the AM/FM tuner location in the dash console and retain the factory look, the Santa Cruz ups the ante with modern technology like Bluetooth® for wireless phone convenience, USB ports for digital music, and an option to add satellite radio. And RetroSound backs up this radio with a 2-year warranty.

Wireless convenience with Bluetooth

You can answer a phone call with the push of a button and talk as if your caller is sitting next to you, freeing up your hands and letting you concentrate on the drive. And the Santa Cruz M4 receiver supports Bluetooth audio streaming, so you can stream music wirelessly from compatible devices to the receiver, with basic control over Internet radio stations, like Pandora® and Spotify®.

Lots of music at your fingertips

Speaking of radio, you can also connect a SiriusXM tuner for deep satellite radio programming that won't fade away when you head out of town. The two rear auxiliary inputs also provide a handy connection if you want to hook up a portable high-res audio player or another device. You can connect your iPhone®, iPod®, or USB thumb drive to the two rear USB ports.  And, of course, you can also tune in your favorite local AM and FM stations. 

Make it a complete RetroSound system

Wanna add some serious power to your ride? RetroSound offers strong amplifiers to get the most impact out of your speakers and subwoofer. They also make low-profile car speakers that fit into a wide range of older cars and trucks, so you can be sure that your sound system will do justice to your vintage vehicle.

Bluetooth note: Use of this receiver's Bluetooth features will depend upon your phone's Bluetooth capabilities. Learn more in our article explaining Bluetooth profiles.

This digital media receiver will not play CDs.


Product highlights:

    General Features:
    • digital media receiver (does not play CDs)
    • fits in factory tuner location in select 1988-1994 GMC and Chevrolet trucks and SUVs
    • selectable display illumination with 32,000 colors
    • non-volatile memory to retain saved presets when radio is disconnected from power
    Audio Features:
    • AM/FM RDS tuner with 30 presets
    • plays MP3, WMA, and FLAC music files from external sources
    • MFi (Made for iPhone®/iPod®) certified
    • built-in Bluetooth® connectivity (mic included)
    • compatible with SiriusXM satellite radio tuner
    • inputs: two rear USB ports; two rear aux inputs
    • outputs: 6-channel preamp outputs (2.85-volt front, rear, sub)
    Other Features:

    What's in the box:

    • Radio body (M4)
    • Display face
    • Face-to-Body cable
    • Main harness
    • Power/ground harness
    • Speaker harness
    • GM adapter harness
    • GM antenna adapter
    • Quick Start Guide

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    << >>

    More details on the RetroSound Santa Cruz M4

    Stacey B.

    Product Research

    General Features
    Variety Of Sources

    General Features

    Vehicle Compatibility: RetroSound's Santa Cruz is designed specifically for 1988-94 GM trucks and features an OE-style appearance for seamless integration.

    Variable-Color LCD: variable color illumination display with over 32,000 of color variations. Choose from a selection of preset colors, have the unit scan through all preset color continuously, or customize your own color to better match your vehicle's interior lights. You can also adjust the brightness of the display to High or Low.

    MOSFET Amplifier: The Santa Cruz (M4) is equipped with a 25 watts x 4-channel (RMS)/45 watts x 4-channel (Peak) MOSFET amplifier.

    6Ch/2.85V RCA Outputs: The in-dash receiver features front, rear and subwoofer 2.85-volt RCA outputs. The front and rear speaker RCA outputs are balance and fade adjustable. The subwoofer RCA output is non-fading.

    Subwoofer Control: When the subwoofer RCA output is active, you can adjust the output level (0-12) of the sub output. You can also set the low-pass crossover to 80, 120, or 160Hz.

    Equalizer: The Santa Cruz (M4) features the following preset EQ curves (Classic, Pop, Rock, or Off) to customize your music listening. The Off mode activates a 3-Band EQ which lets you adjust Bass, Midrange, & Treble manually.

    3-Band EQ
    Frequency Level
    Bass 60, 80, 100, 200 Hz -7 to +7
    Midrange 0.5, 1.0, 1.5, 2.5 kHz  -7 to +7
    Treble 10.0, 12.5, 15.0, 17.5 kHz -7 to +7

    XBAS: This function boosts bass & treble at low listening volumes, and should be turned off at higher listening levels.

    Balance & Fader Control: The Balance adjustment function allows you to adjust or pan the stereo sound from the left or right; this is helpful to compensate for the position of the driver in relation to the speaker locations. Adjustment range is 0 to 12. The Fader Control allows you to fade the sound from the front pair of speaker to your rear pair of speakers. Adjustment range is 0 to 12.

    Turn-On Volume: You can set the Santa Cruz (M4) to power-on to the same volume level (0-46) every time, or let it default to the last volume when turned off.

    Key Beep: When this function is enabled, every knob turn or button press will output a beep tone.

    Variety Of Sources

    Built-in Bluetooth: The RetroSound Santa Cruz (M4) is equipped with built-in Bluetooth (HFP/A2DP/AVRCP) allowing you to make and receive phone calls wirelessly through the receiver; as well as stream music wirelessly from your Bluetooth-enabled smartphone to the head unit. Before using your Bluetooth enabled device, it must be paired to the Santa Cruz (M4). You can only pair one device at a time with this unit. Once paired, when your Bluetooth device is in close proximity to the RetroSound receiver, the auto connection function automatically connects the two units. The Santa Cruz (M4) is compatible with most Bluetooth enabled mobile phones, including the Apple iPhone & Android smartphones.

    • Hands-Free Communication: The Santa Cruz (M4) allows for wireless communication between the head unit and your Bluetooth enabled cell-phone. You can answer an incoming call from the head unit's front-panel control knobs. Incoming phone call information will be displayed on the unit's front-panel LCD and your music will be pause or muted. You will still use your phone to dial a phone number and then the call will transfer to the RetroSound radio. Use the included external microphone to speak into during your phone conversation, while the other party will be heard through your vehicle's speakers.
    • Wireless Audio Streaming: The Santa Cruz (M4) also allows you to play back stored music and  music apps from your Bluetooth-enabled phone or personal music player using a paired Bluetooth connection. Playback controls included Play/Pause, Stop, & Next/Previous Track. This unit does not display song/artist information from Bluetooth audio devices.
    Note: Due to the differences in Bluetooth technology, some Bluetooth enabled devices may be incompatible, function improperly, or may not support all features when used with the RetroSound Santa Cruz (M4).

    Dual USB Ports: The RetroSound Santa Cruz (M4) features two USB (type-A) ports connected to its rear chassis by a 20" pigtail. The USB ports enable connection of  portable USB mass-storage class (MSC) devices; such as a portable digital audio player or USB thumbdrive. Once you've connected your compatible USB device, the Santa Cruz (M4) will find your songs instantly and automatically start playing them. This unit supports MP3 (128 kbps +), WMA (64 kbps +), and FLAC music files in format FAT and FAT32. The unit can recognize a maximum of 999 songs/files (files will be read in order of creation and not alphabetically or numerically).

    • Controls: You will be able to control basic playback functions of your music files such as Play, Pause, Skip Track, Intro Scan, Repeat Track, and Random.
    • Display: The Santa Cruz (M4) also supports ID3-tags/WMA-tags for song/artist information. 
    • Charging: USB portable audio players that can be charged via USB will be charged when plugged into the receiver's USB port (max. 0.5A), and the vehicle's ignition switch is set to ACC or On.
    • Not compatible with Android mobile devices.
    • You cannot connect a USB device via a USB hub or Multi-Card Reader to this unit.

    iPod/iPhone Direct Connect: Either rear-panel USB port can act as an iPod/iPhone high-speed direct connection when used with the USB/iPod cable that came with your iPod/iPhone. The USB connection allows your iPod/iPhone's stored music and music apps to be loaded instantly to the unit and sound quality to be maximized through the head unit's 1-bit D/A converter. The RetroSound Santa Cruz (M4) supports audio playback of stored music or music apps, music navigation, information display, and charging of select iPod/iPhone models.

    • Control: You can control your connected iPod/iPhone from the head unit's front-panel control knobs. You can browse your iPod/iPhone's music by Playlist, Artist, Album, Song, Genre, Composer, or Podcast.  In addition, you can activate Repeat playback modes (all/track). Most iPod/iPhone device's clickwheel or touchscreen will be locked during connection (Apple devices w/ iOS 6.0+ will stay unlocked).
    • Display: The Santa Cruz (M4) will display your iPod/iPhone's music file information from stored music. The head unit will display Track number, Elapsed playing time, Artist name and Song/Album title.
    • Charging: The unit's USB connection provides 0.5A of current to power and charge your connected iPod/iPhone when your vehicle's ignition switch is set to the 'ACC' or 'On' position. This unit does not charge the iPad. If your iPod/iPhone has no initial battery charge, then the unit will not recognize it.

    iPod/iPhone Compatibility: The Santa Cruz (M4) supports select 30-pin and Lightning-connector iPod and iPhone models (not compatible with iPad).

    • Full Size: Classic (all generations)
    • Nano: 3 Generation and newer
    • Touch: 2 Generation and newer
    • iPhone: 3G and newer
    Note: Apple iPod/iPhone software updates may change functionality results. If you download a newer software version, you may need to reset the head unit and your iPod/iPhone to regain functionality. If this doesn't work, you may need to wait until a newer software update is available.

    Dual Auxiliary Inputs: The universal receiver features two 3.5mm auxiliary inputs connected to the rear chassis by 7" pigtails. The Aux inputs provide a connection for portable external audio sources such as a MP3 player or  CD player.

    SiriusXM Ready: The Santa Cruz (M4) is SiriusXM-Ready and connects to the SiriusXM SXV300 Connect Vehicle Tuner (220SXV300, sold separately). The SXV300 plugs directly into the Santa Cruz (M4) without the need for special adapters or cables. A SiriusXM subscription is also required. The SiriusXM Connect Vehicle Tuner supports SiriusXM programming with access to 175+ SiriusXM channels via subscription. Check out the most popular SiriusXM subscription packages here.

    • Category Search searches for channels in a certain category
    • Information such as Channel Name, Artist Name, and Song Title can be viewed on the head unit's display
    • Up to 15 SiriusXM Satellite Radio station presets
    • Channels containing unsuitable content for children can be blocked
    Note: A separate SiriusXM Satellite Radio subscription is required (operates on the XM Network). However, you can easily add this SiriusXM tuner to an existing Sirius or XM account for a Multi-Radio Discount Plan.

    RDS AM/FM Tuner: The Santa Cruz (M4) features a built-in RDS AM/FM tuner. The Radio Data System (RDS) feature displays radio broadcast information such as artist & track information when listening to compatible AM/FM stations. The unit's tuner features 3 FM bands and 2 AM bands. A total of 30 AM/FM presets can be stored manually or automatically. Select between Local and Distant settings can aid in listening to weak FM radio stations or compensate for stations that have too strong of a signal. This unit's tuner can be set to USA or European tuning.

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    Customer Q&A

    14 questions already asked

    where are the usb ports and bluetooth microphone located after installation?
    [ Jarrod  Apr 25, 2022 ]
    2 answers
    I'd like to do the same.does Crutchfield have a panel mount USB port for the filler panel? Or.what I'd like even to remove the tape deck and find one large filler panel that I can use for larger storage AND then add the panel mount USB port. Hope that makes sense. Anything Crutchfield carries associated with this would be helpful. Thank you!
    [ Jarrod  Apr 30, 2022 ]
    The microphone is mounted to the steering column. The USB ports stick out of the "motor" about 10". I left them behind the filler panel in the center dash. I will order a panel mount USB port for the filler panel (drill a hole in it and it bolts through) but I have seen some guys run them to the ash tray. You will probably need an extension cable though.
    [ MICHAEL  Apr 26, 2022 ]
    Do you have to use the old cdm or other words the brain for the old radios for install?
    [ Anthony  Mar 28, 2022 ]
    4 answers
    No you do not. Use only the items that come with the new system.Enter an answer to this question.
    [ Harry  Mar 28, 2022 ]
    Anthony; No, you will remove the old brain and replace it with a new "brain" that comes with the new unit. The new "brain" should fit in the same location as the old one. I reused the bracket that held the original for holding the new with a few small mods.
    [ STEVEN  Mar 28, 2022 ]
    No, none of the old stereo is used for this install. However, I used the OEM bracket that the original radio main unit (brain) uses to fasten it under the dash above the gas pedal, for the bracket to install the Retrosound main unit( brain) in the same location. I just attached it to the OEM bracket and reinstalled the bracket just like it was originally installed. Work flawlessly. Chris.
    [ CHRISTOPHER ALL  Mar 28, 2022 ]
    No. All of the original factory electronics (except speakers) are removed.
    [ Richard  Mar 28, 2022 ]
    Does this head unit come pre-wired to accept the factory harness so the installation is plug and play? I normally have Crutchfield do the wiring to the vehicle specific harness but it isnt giving me that option for this product.
    [ Jtothesk  Jan 08, 2022 ]
    3 answers
    Yes it plugged right into my 1993 chevy truck
    [ CHRISTOPHER  Jan 08, 2022 ]
    The only wiring you have to do is make the connection between the radio harness and the vehicle specific harness, then it's plug and play.( very simple) Also just a heads up, the Infinity Kappa 463 XF plates that Crutchfield says do not fit, actually fit the dash and cab corners better than the 4" with adapters.
    [ CHRISTOPHER ALL  Jan 08, 2022 ]
    No. You will need to buy a "pigtail" specific for your vehicle factory harness and then splice the wires into the pigtail that plugs into the head unit.
    [ Richard  Jan 08, 2022 ]
    How do you mount the Santa Cruz motor 4 Radio Body in under the dash in a 1989 GMC Sierra? The parts in the box will not work.
    [ William  Sep 28, 2020 ]
    3 answers
    Actually the parts that come with it work perfectly. I used one "L" bracket and sandwiched it between the factory brace and the firewall. So I used "One" screw to mount the main unit.
    [ CHRISTOPHER ALL  Jan 08, 2022 ]
    I mounted mine up under the dash kinda where the old factory radio use to live..
    [ RANDAL  Sep 29, 2020 ]
    I did not use any of the included brackets, I mounted the under dash part to the original bracket.
    [ Stephen  Sep 28, 2020 ]
    What are the dimensions?
    [ Christopher  Jun 25, 2020 ]
    2 answers
    It fits exactly like the factory radio. The Mai. Unit is a little tight, however it was easy to install.
    [ CHRISTOPHER ALL  Jan 08, 2022 ]
    6 inches by 3 1/2 inches perfect fit in a 1990 chevy truck
    [ Derek  Jul 04, 2020 ]
    i have the factory equilzer/cassette. never use it. will your radio by pass it with out cutting wires? just plug in and good to go?
    [ BRICE  Apr 16, 2020 ]
    2 answers
    Yes, it comes with all wiring to make it plug and play.
    [ CHRISTOPHER ALL  Jan 08, 2022 ]
    Yes you can bypass it. The new radio doesn't give you the option to plug it in and use it. If you don't decide to remove the unit simply unplug it and leave it in the hole. I removed my eq/cassette unit. I'm having a hard time trying to find a storage bin in place of the unit.
    [ Eric  Apr 23, 2020 ]
    Does this fit as a replacement for the original radio of my 1988 Buick Regal Coupe?
    [ NeoJD  Aug 20, 2019 ]
    1 answer
    You can check to see if this will fit your vehicle by using our Outfit My Car tool: For additional details on fit or installation please contact an Advisor by phone (1-800-324-9695) or online chat. They will be able to pull up your vehicle and give you the details on if this will fit and what you will need for an installation in your vehicle.
    [ Krissy  Aug 27, 2019 ]  Staff
    What would be the best speakers to pair with this in a single cab Chevy?
    [ Richard  Jul 17, 2019 ]
    2 answers
    I used the Inifity Kappa 463 XF. And actually CRUTCHFIELD says they don't fit, however they fit WAY better than the 4" with Adapter plates that CRUTCHFIELD recommended.
    [ CHRISTOPHER ALL  Jan 08, 2022 ]
    Hi Richard, thank you for your question! In order for us to insure fitment, and to send you a recommendation that will be suit your musical tastes, I recommend chatting with an Advisor online, or by phone at 800-363-4490. They will be able to pull up your specific vehicle info, and get you set up with your new speakers.
    [ Jess  Jul 29, 2019 ]  Staff
    Will the Bluetooth work with an Android phone?
    [ Blas  Mar 24, 2019 ]
    2 answers
    I would think so, I have a IPHONE and it works perfectly with it.
    [ CHRISTOPHER ALL  Jan 08, 2022 ]
    It sure will work with Android phones! My Bio:
    [ Paul  Apr 03, 2019 ]  Staff
    The USB ports come out the back of the unit. Do you have to string the USB connection beneath the dash? Seems like there should be USB ports in the front.
    [ Scott  Mar 22, 2019 ]
    1 answer
    If you purchased the product from Crutchfield, feel free to contact our Tech Support team. They can walk you through the settings on the product and see if there may be a fix. Our toll-free Tech Support number is printed on your invoice, and is also available under the "My Orders" tab in the "My Account" section of our website. If you did not purchase the unit from Crutchfield, then you may want to contact the manufacturer.
    [ Krissy  Mar 27, 2019 ]  Staff
    i have front and rear speakers can the unit fad and balance the speakers?
    [ daniel  Mar 15, 2019 ]
    3 answers
    [ Harry  Mar 28, 2022 ]
    [ CHRISTOPHER ALL  Jan 08, 2022 ]
    Yes you can fade front to rear whether you are using the built in amplification or the RCA preamp outputs.
    [ Cosmo  Mar 20, 2019 ]  Staff
    does the radio have a clock?
    [ daniel  Mar 14, 2019 ]
    4 answers
    [ CHRISTOPHER ALL  Jan 08, 2022 ]
    Yes. And you can toggle it on or off while streaming music. Or to be on even when the radios off
    [ CHASE  Mar 15, 2019 ]
    Yes, it does have a clock. I just installed this unit into my 1992 GMC Dually. Works great. Some mods required on the old bracket but pretty minor.
    [ RICHARD  Mar 14, 2019 ]
    [ Ryan  Mar 14, 2019 ]
    Is there a blank off plate or pocket for the factory tape deck and equalizer available?
    [ Adam  Dec 29, 2018 ]
    1 answer
    We carry replacement panels that can be used in place of the stock one that surrounds the cassette player. They will give you a din sized opening that you can install a din sized pocket. I recommend contacting an advisor on 1-800-324-9695 to check availability and a possible color match for your vehicle My Bio:
    [ Paul  Jan 05, 2019 ]  Staff
    will the equalizer tape deck hook up to this radio?
    [ Ronnie  Nov 05, 2018 ]
    2 answers
    No, it will not connect to the factory Cassette and EQ.
    [ CHRISTOPHER ALL  Jan 08, 2022 ]
    It will not retain a factory EQ or cassette player.
    [ Ryan  Nov 12, 2018 ]  Staff

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