Converting iTunes songs to ringtones
December 16, 2008 11:53 AM   Subscribe

Is it possible to convert the songs in my iTunes library to ringtones for my iPhone?

I've followed the directions listed here and elsewhere on the web, but my iTunes (newest version - 8.0.2) seems too smart, and won't recognize the newly configured .m4r AAC files. Not only that, but songs that I had previously purchased through the iTunes store are unable to be converted to AAC or mp3 files.

Did Apple get wise to all this monkey business, or am I doing something wrong? There are lots of old songs that I'd like to convert to ringtones - any suggestions?
posted by billysumday to Technology (8 answers total) 17 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Those instructions are how I've made all my iPhone ringtones and it still works for me in the latest version. Are you sure you have your encoder set to AAC Encoder in the Import settings? The menu option to convert the selection is now also changed to 'Create AAC Version'. After it converts the selection to m4a and adds it to your library, make sure you remove and then re-add the file after you rename it to .m4r. When you open the m4r file in Finder it should automatically be added to the Ringtones in iTunes.
posted by Venadium at 12:04 PM on December 16, 2008

Try Hymn to get your music to mp3 and then you can convert the mp3s to ringtones with Audiko.
posted by mikesch at 12:05 PM on December 16, 2008

Response by poster: WHOAH. Okay, that totally worked this time. I think I wasn't deleting the 25 second AAC version from my library BEFORE trying to open up the .m4r file as a ringtone. So, once I deleted the version from my library, I opened the .m4r file and it popped up as a ringtone.

However, I'm still unable to take songs that I purchased from iTunes long, long ago and convert them to AAC.
posted by billysumday at 12:13 PM on December 16, 2008

i've noticed that behaviour about not removing something from the library first too. You don't actually need to delete it though, just change the name of the song in your library to something else (or change the name of the ringtone), and that'll work too. (in case you want to keep the thing in your music library for some reason)
posted by yeoz at 12:17 PM on December 16, 2008

I think the ability to make ringtones from iTunes Store tracks is determined by the record labels. In iTunes I have the "ringtone" column showing, but a lot of my tracks don't have the bell icon indicating that they can be made into ringtones. When I try to make a ringtone from a track without the icon, I am told that the ability to do so is no longer available.

Your best bet is to burn an audio CD of the tracks you want to make ringtones from and then re-rip that audio CD encoding as MP3 or AAC tracks.
posted by phrayzee at 12:46 PM on December 16, 2008

I'm guessing that you aren't using a Mac, but if you were, you could try iToner. You might also try myxer.
posted by inconsequentialist at 12:48 AM on December 17, 2008

the songs you purchased on itunes a long time ago i assume are DRM'd to death. burn them to a cd and rip them back into itunes.
posted by phritosan at 7:38 AM on December 17, 2008

I have used before and it works very well. For the older tunes that have DRM on them, Audiko may already have a ringtone in its library.
posted by strosnider at 1:35 PM on December 17, 2008

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