How to Make Your Own iPhone Ringtone (Part I)

November 9th, 2009


For some people, it's the Holy Grail of ringtones:  creating customized ringtones for each of their friends, choosing the appropriate songs to match them, and doing it all for free.  Well, making your own ringtone doesn't have to be as hard as finding the Holy Grail, because you've come across this article.  Here, you'll find a few tips for using features like iTunes to create your own ringtones without breaking the bank.  Here's how to get started.


Using iTunes to Upload a Song into a Ringtone

The first question many people have is simple:  how can you get a song from a CD onto your phone?  If you have iTunes - and since you have an iPhone, we're betting you do - you can do this relatively simply.  You'll find a more comprehensive guide at Art of the iPhone, but here are the basic steps.

First, make sure you have the CD of the song you want to use.  Open up iTunes and click into "Preferences," and then "General."  Make sure that you're using the setting of an AAC encoder under "Import Settings," at which point you can then find the song under iTunes and set a start and stop time for your ringtone (under "Get Info" when you right-click on the song).

Clicking "Create AAC Version" (after right-clicking on the song) will create a file you can use for your iPhone.  Make sure you consult the Art of the iPhone instructions for the specific steps you can take, as well as screen shots that show you how it's done.  After that, you should be able to have a fully-formatted ringtone ready on your iPhone - and it didn't cost you a thing!


If You're Not Using iTunes

You'll generally want to use iTunes when you're working with your iPhone, but if you came to this article looking for a way to simply make your own ringtones on MP3-compatible phones, you can check out Wired's tutorial.  You can use programs like audacity to help edit and upload these songs onto your mobile phone.

In Part II of How to Make Your Own iPhone Ringtone, you'll learn about actually making your own custom songs and putting them into your iPhone.  If you've ever wanted to hear your own music coming from your iPhone as a ringtone, stay tuned!