Monday, January 14, 2013

iOS 6 | iPhone 5 | Ringtone Tutorial | Make Custom Ringtones from mp3 Songs

This is a companion tutorial to my youtube video.  This is a more In-Depth tutorial than the video.

This will teach you how to create homemade ringtones using your own mp3's (or other music files).  I know that there are many paid and free apps out there but I don't think they work well, plus I like to have some customization in my ringtones.

I hope this written tutorial clarifies some confusion that has come from the video.

I will be posting an updated Youtube tutorial in the coming days.

Step 1: Shorten the length of the song.

  • Drag the mp3 you wish to use into the iTunes window.
  • Right click on the audio file.
  • Choose, "Get Info"
  • Go to the "Options" tab.
  • Be sure to research your song so that you know exactly when you want to cut the song.
    • Mark your In and Out points.
    • A safe ringtone length for the iPhone is between 30 and 40 seconds but I usually stick with no more than 30 seconds.

Step 2: Converting music to iPhone-usable files.

  • Select either one of your pre-time-adjusted files that you just modified or one that you know is within your duration range of no more than 30-40 seconds.
  • (If the audio file is pre-edited and not currently in iTunes) Drag the audio file into the "Library" section of the iTunes window.  
    • Suggestion: To keep my files more organized, I create a playlist folder in which to do all of my work.
  • Right click on the audio file(s) (to select multiple files click on the first file in the list, hold down the shift key, then click on the last song in the list).
  • Choose "Create AAC Version".
    • You may see a duplicate of the original file depending on whether you are working within a playlist or not.
    • The new file will only be the duration that set in the previous step.
  • It is now safe to remove all of the files from the iTunes window.
    • I do this because having multiples of the same song in view, very, VERY confusing.  But you do not have to so.
    • When you delete the files, a prompt will appear asking if you would like to keep the original file.
Step 3: Make file extensions visible.  Make sure that all of your file extensions are visible otherwise you won't be able to change it.
  • Open "Finder"
  • Click on the "Finder" Menu.
  • Choose "Preferences"
  • Go to the "Advanced" tab
  • Choose "Show All File Extensions"
Step 4: Change the file extension.
  • It all depends on your iTunes settings as to where the new AAC file was extracted to.  But mine is set to:
    • Music -> iTunes -> iTunes Media -> Music -> 'Folder named after the songs artist'
  • Once you find the song, you can either movie it to a more manageable location, or leave it where it is.
  • On a Mac, highlight the file and click enter in order to Rename the file.
    • Or slowly click on it twice.
  • Change the file extension from .m4a to .m4r
  • It will ask you, "Are you sure you want to change the extension from .m4a to .m4r?"
    • Click the, "Use .m4r" button.
Step 5: Make the "Tones" folder visible.
  • Go to iTunes.
  • Click on the "iTunes"menu at the top.
  • Go to "Preferences"
  • On the "General" tab under the section labeled "Show", check the "Tones" box.
    • You will then see the "Tones" folder appear in your library.
Step 6: Making the file a ringtone.
  • Go to iTunes
  • Click on the "Tones" folder so that it is open.
  • Drag the .m4r file directly into the folder
  • Go to: Music -> iTunes -> iTunes Media -> Tones
  • You will see a copy of the song in the Tones folder within the iTunes folder structure.


I had many people, in the comments of the video, ask where I was finding these files.  I am a computer user who likes to see file structures.  I DO NOT like the icon view in MAC Finder (or in MS Window Explorer). To recreate my folder view, follow these steps.
  • Open "Finder"
  • Click on "View" menu at the top.
  • Choose "Show Toolbar"
  • If it's not already visible, to show the 'Sidebar' go back to the "View" menu and choose "Show Sidebar"
  • And just for personal preference, continue to return to the "View" menu and choose both, "Show Path Bar" & "Show Status Bar"  Then your folder will look just like mine.  So you'll see what I see.

Other related youtube videos:

Apple OS X | Keyboard Shortcut | Sleep, Restart, Shutdown

iOS 6 | iPhone 5 | Reset Network Settings | iOS 6.0.2


  1. Hi

    Tks very much for post:

    I like it and hope that you continue posting.

    Let me show other source that may be good for community.

    Source: ios 8 tips

    Best rgs


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