How to Create a Ringtone for iPhone

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If you’re one of those people who grow tired of the same old limited list of Apple iPhone ringtones, then I’ve got a treat for you. Nowadays you can easily create custom ringtones from within the iTunes program. In this article we’ll be going through all the steps involved with turning your iTunes library into custom ringtones for your Apple iPhone. Read on to see how to create a ringtone for iPhone.

How to Create a Ringtone for iPhone

You will need to use iTunes for it. Follow these six simple steps:

Step 1: Choose the song that you want to use. iPhone ringtones tend to be about 30 seconds in length, so you will want to note the part of the song that you will want to use as the ringtone.

Step 2: Choose the portion of the song that you’d like to use as a ringtone. iTunes currently has the ability to choose both the start and stop time of songs. Simply right click on the song that you will be using and select the Get Info tab. From here you will want to select Options; there should be a field for start and stop times.

Step 3: Create an AAC version. This is Apple’s very own song format which maintains the same audio quality as an mp3 whilst taking up less file space. With the chosen song highlighted, you will then select File, Convert and Convert to AAC version. By creating an AAC version, you will gain a second copy of the song. However, this version will only include the start and stop times that were previously selected.

Step 4: Make a copy of the song outside of iTunes. Simply drag the newly created AAC version of the song out of iTunes and into a folder or the desktop to create a copy of it.

Step 5: Change the file extension. iTunes uses a file format called .m4r for their ringtones. AAC files are .m4a, so this will need to be changed in order for the program to recognize your song as a ringtone. Wherever you saved the copy of the song, click on the file’s name and replace the .m4a extension with .m4r.

* Note: Some Windows users may not be able to see file extensions, this can be fixed by going into the control panel from the start menu by searching for the control panel app (Windows 10) and clicking on Appearance and Personalization. Next click on file explorer options and select the view tab. From there just uncheck the box that says “Hide extensions for known file types” and click apply.

Step 6: Now that you have managed to change the file extension; drag the file back into your iTunes library (you can delete the old .m4a copy of the file as well). Once you do this, sync your phone and voila!; Your custom ringtone will now show up on the device.


Common issues users may run into usually involve the custom ringtones not syncing with the newer models of the iPhone. For more help regarding this issue with the iPhone 6 & 7, please visit Apple’s official support page. Now your iPhone ringtones will be truly unique; no more plain old Marimba. If you have any questions on how to create a ringtone for iPhone, please feel free to ask below.

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