How to Set a Song As Your Ringtone on iPhone

Three Parts:Creating the RingtoneTransferring the RingtoneChanging Your Ringtone

While you have a lot of options for ringtones on your iPhone, nothing says "you" like your favorite song. You can use iTunes to turn any of your music files into a 30-40 second ringtone clip. After syncing the new clip to your iPhone, you'll be able to set it as your general ringtone or assign it to a specific contact.

Part 1
Creating the Ringtone

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    Download and install iTunes if you're using Windows. You can use iTunes to create a ringtone from any music file on your computer and then transfer it to your iPhone. If you're using Windows, you'll need to download and install iTunes. It comes pre-installed on Macs.
    • You can download iTunes for free from apple.com/itunes/download/.
    • It is highly recommended that you use the latest version of iTunes, as syncing your ringtones has become much easier in later versions.
    • While there are apps and websites available to create ringtones out of your songs, you'll still need iTunes to sync the file back to your iPhone after you make it. This makes just creating the ringtone directly in iTunes a much more straightforward option.
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    Load the song that you want to create a ringtone from in iTunes. You'll need to add the song to your iTunes library before you can create a ringtone from it.
    • You can drag and drop the song into the iTunes window to add it to your library.
    • You can also click File → Add File to Library (PC) or iTunes → Add to Library and browse for the file.
    • If you can't add the song to your library, it may not be a compatible format. See Convert a WAV File to a MP3 File for instructions for converting most audio files to MP3 format.
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    Play the song to find a good ringtone segment. Your ringtone segment can be up to 40 seconds long. Find a good spot in your song that will make the perfect ringtone.
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    Note the starting and stopping point of the segment. Write down the starting minute and second position, as well as the stopping point. This will make creating a segment easier.
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    Right-click on the song and select "Get Info." This will open another window with the details of the file.
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    Click the "Options" tab. You'll see Start Time and Stop Time fields below.
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    Enter the times you noted into the Start and Stop fields. Make sure to check the boxes next to the field to enable the new times.
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    Test and adjust your segment. Close the Get Info window and press Play in iTunes to listen to your segment. you can go back to the Options tab in the Get Info window to make adjustments up to a hundredth of a second. Keep testing it until it sounds perfect for your ringtone.
    • Remember, your segment will need to be 40 seconds or less.
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    Right-click on the song and select "Create AAC Version." You'll see a new copy of your song appear in the library. The original will show the full length of the song, while the new copy will only show the length of the ringtone segment.
    • If you don't see "Create AAC Version," click the "Edit" or "iTunes" menu and select "Preferences." Click the "Import Settings" button and select "AAC Encoder" from the "Import Using" menu.[1]
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    Right-click the new copy and select "Show in Windows Explorer" (PC) or "Show in Finder" (Mac). A file explorer window will open and your new copy will be highlighted.
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    Enable file extensions if you're using Windows. You'll be changing the file format by renaming the extension, but these are hidden for many Windows users. If extensions are enabled, you'll see ".m4a" at the end of your segment file name. If you don't, you'll need to enable file extensions in order to proceed:
    • Windows 10, 8.1, and 8 - Click the "View" menu in the Windows Explorer window. Check the "File name extensions" box to enable extensions.
    • Windows 7 and earlier - Open the Control Panel from the Start menu. Select "Folder Options" or "Appearance and Personalization" and then "Folder Options." Click the "View" tab. Uncheck the "Hide extensions for known file types" box.
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    Right-click on the segment file and select "Rename." This will let you change the file extension.
    • Make sure you right-click on the file in the explorer window, not in your iTunes library.
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    Change the ".m4a" extension to ".m4r". This will change the file into a format that iTunes and your iPhone will recognize as a ringtone.
    • You will likely be warned that this could make your file not work. You can safely proceed.
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    Open your iTunes library. Switch back to your iTunes window so that you're looking at the original song and the copy.
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    Delete the copy from iTunes, but not from your computer. Right-click on the segment copy in iTunes and select "Delete." Choose "Keep File" when prompted. If you delete the file, you'll have to start over. You just want to remove the file from your iTunes library.
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    Drag and drop the .m4r file into the iTunes window. This will add it to your Tones library. You can now transfer the ringtone to your iPhone.[2]

Part 2
Transferring the Ringtone

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    Connect your iPhone to your computer. If you've connected your iPhone to your computer before, it will appear in iTunes automatically. If you haven't you may be prompted to perform the initial setup in iTunes. This only takes a moment, and just gives a name to your iPhone in iTunes.
    • You may need to tap "Trust" on the pop-up that appears on your iPhone's screen.
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    Open the Tones library in iTunes. Click the "..." button at the top of the iTunes window and select the "Tones" option. It has a Bell icon. You should see a list of available ringtones from your library, including the ringtone you created in the previous section.
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    Start dragging the ringtone with your mouse. You should see a sidebar appear on the left side of the screen with your iPhone listed in the "Devices" section.
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    Drag your ringtone file onto your iPhone in the left sidebar. This will transfer it immediately to your iPhone.
    • If you can't get your ringtone to transfer this way, select your iPhone from the top row of buttons. Click the "Tones" option in the left sidebar that appears after selecting your device. Check the "Sync Tones" box and then select the ringtone that you want to transfer. Click "Apply" to begin transferring the ringtone.

Part 3
Changing Your Ringtone

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    Open the Settings app on your iPhone. Once the ringtone has been transferred, you'll be able to set it as your ringtone or assign it to a specific contact.
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    Select "Sounds." This will open your device's sound options.
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    Tap the "Ringtone" option. All of your available ringtones will be displayed.
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    Select your new ringtone. Ringtones you've added yourself will appear at the top of the list. Tap it to select it as your standard ringtone.
    • If you can't find your ringtone, it may have been longer than 40 seconds.
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    Set your new ringtone for a specific contact. You can give specific contacts different ringtones.
    • Open the Contacts app.
    • Tap the contact you want to set a special ringtone for.
    • Tap "Edit" in the upper-right corner.
    • Tap the "Ringtone" option."
    • Select the ringtone that you want to use.

Article Info

Categories: IPhone Applications