A little bit ago, Jerry wrote up a story about how to use iTunes to create custom ringtones for the iPhone using only software you probably have installed already. It’s a good tip, but I love specialized software with a dedicated user interface, so I was left unsatisfied. I hunted down this handy application and I’m pretty happy with it.
iRinger is a shareware program that will take any non-protected music file (explained later) and turn it into a ringtone that is ready for your iPhone. Normally I don’t use a lot of shareware, but iRinger seems to find the right balance between useful and naggy. There is a banner ad displayed beneath the application at all times, but it doesn’t get in the way of normal operations. Also, there is no timer. Works for me!
Let’s play around with it. For this demo I selected “Ben Walker. It’s a really geeky song and it’s pretty darn accurate about the world of Twitter. You should definitely check out his work if you haven’t already. Anyway, let’s make the tagline into a ringtone for my iPhone.,” better known as “You’re No One If You’re Not On Twitter,” by
Downloading the program is very simple. From the website you can either pick the complete “.exe” file up or get a small installer that aims it at the desktop. Personally, as neurotic as I am, I put it into my program files and made myself a desktop shortcut. Remember it can just be deleted to uninstall, though, so don’t get hung up on any program file you might create – just delete it. Either way, you’ve got it installed now.
First, open up the program and check out the interface:
As you can see, the basic options consist of “Import,” “Preview” (or Play, basically), and “Export.” I’ll get to the others in a minute. First, click Import and bring up your song. I’ll bring up The Twitter Song:
When the song is entered into iRinger, the waveforms come up on the viewing pane. These are actually kind of handy because when the song gets quiet or has a break, the waves show it pretty clearly. The pane shows exactly 30 seconds by default, but you can adjust that in the first slider. In the second slider you can control volume. I suggest you leave this one at 100% since you can always turn down your ringer volume.If the ringtone is MUCH louder than the rest of your others you might want to go back and “remaster” it though.
The fader is pretty handy as you can choose to fade your tones in, out, or both in and out. It works very well, but you can only fade a single chosen percent of the song, so it’s better to either fade the beginning OR the end.
In terms of the effects, I was really unimpressed with them. They mostly sound like the silly little sound effects that come with free music mixing software – very juvenile. Try them at your own reputation’s peril.
Once you’re happy with your selection and any other alterations you’ve made, it’s time to export. Go ahead and click the export button and see the dialogue box appear. First you can specify your export location (which will be remembered for future exports). The title will be the name you see on your iPhone’s ringtone list. Looping is only relevant for previewing the ringtone over and over and is largely irrelevant. The easiest thing to do is to choose “export to iTunes,” which will send it directly to your Ringtone category. The SCP option is kind of strange and I was unable to understand the virtue of it (maybe for cracked iPhones?). Let me know if you figure it out in the comments.
You’re done! All you need to do is go into iTunes, make sure your iPhone is set to sync the ringtones you want (under your iPhone’s “Ringtones” tab).
If you want more help, want to unprotect your music legally, or simply want another explanation of some of the features, check out the tutorial videos that iRinger made up on YouTube – they’re most helpful! Let US know if you have any questions by leaving them in the comments!