Ringtones with Garageband. Free and easy.

acosmichippo

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#1
With this guide, you will be able to create ringtones using a legitimate method provided by Apple that does not rely on bugs, glitches, or loopholes. There are two requisites: 1) an unprotected iTunes song (songs downloaded from the iTunes store will not work); and 2) you must have Garageband '08, which is part of iLife '08. So, try it out. It really is pretty easy to do. Don't be intimidated.


1) Open Garageband. Choose "create new music project". Name the project whatever you want the ringtone called. None of the tempo, key or other stuff really matter. It would also be worthwhile to note where it saves the project (in case you want to save and come back to it later).

2) If there are any tracks preloaded, delete them with command+delete (or track->delete track).

3) Import an iTunes song (you can also create your own with Apple loops, or even record something on your own, but that's another topic). Use the media browser by clicking on this button:




Browse your iTunes Library for a song you want to make a ringtone. Then simply click and drag it into garageband like so:




4) Now we need to create a "cycle region" in your song that has to be 40 seconds or less. If it is more, it will not export to iTunes. Before we do this, I recommend changing one thing in Garageband, and that is to change the LCD readout from "Measures" to "Time". This will help us create a region that is <40 seconds. to do this click on this button:




and then choose Time:




5.1) Ok, NOW we can do the "Cycle region". First, click on this button:





you will notice a bar pop up above the track your song is in. This bar represents the chunk of the song that will become your ringtone. From here, simply drag the endpoints of the Cycle Region to the points in your song that you want to be the beginning and end of your RingTone.




Keep in mind the 40 second rule. The times displayed above the track will help you keep track of the length of the cycle region.

to test your cycle region, just click play at the bottom of Garageband. it will loop just like it will on your iPhone. Adjust to taste. When you are happy, proceed to the next step.



continued below...
 

acosmichippo

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#2
5.2) [OPTIONAL] If you want, you can create fade-in or fade-out effects. This is especially useful if you're using clips in the middle of songs and you don't want an awkward, immediate cutoff. First go to Track->Fade Out.


This will bring up the fading region at the bottom of garageband. You will see a purple-shaded area that corresponds to the relative sound level of the track. By default this is at 0db (think of it as the baseline).


To make a fade-in effect, go to the beginning of your cycle region, and click on the top of the purple fading region (on the line). That should create a purple dot that you can then move down to lower the level of your ringtone. As you will notice, this doesn't just lower the level at that spot, but rather the WHOLE track (gradually raises until the end of the song).



So what you need to do is click on that line again (where you want the track to resume full volume) to create another purple dot. Once you have the second dot, raise it back to 0db. You should end up with something like this:



A similar process can be done to create a fade-out effect. If you've gotten this far, i'm confident you can handle that.

6) All of the work is done, and now it's time to let your Mac shine. Go to Share->Send Ringtone to iTunes.



If you have done everything properly, your Mac will render the ringtone, and automatically send it to your Ringtone folder in iTunes where you can then sync it with your iPhone.




mission accomplished.
 
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Marianne

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#3
great instructions! i bought ilife '08 months ago and have yet to install it. need to get around to that so i can make some more ringtones for my iPhone...
 

acosmichippo

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so that's the bare-bones version. Of course, you can add in effects (like fade-ins and outs)... maybe i will embellish the tutorial at a later date.

sorry about any typos, and unfortunately i will be unable to answer questions until later tonight... gotta head to work.
 

patrickj

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#5
Great guide. This was something I'd been meaning to look into since getting a Mac - now I'll just bookmark this. And if I could just get past the stupid Error 5002 when logging into the iTunes store, life would be sweet ....
 

dturner

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#6
This is a great feature. I have been using it since I got my MBP. No more dragging,converting, blah blah blah.
 

kokogirl

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#7
Great tutorial. I have a question. I want to make a ringtone of a song that is in my iTunes library but does not show up in iTunes when I click that lower right hand thing on garage band. It is like when I open iTunes I see all my music and when I try to import from iTunes to garage band I only can see/chose some of the music.

Any hints?

thanks!

EDIT: I made a ringtone! YEAH! I still would like to know why I can't see all the music, though!
 

dturner

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#8
Great tutorial. I have a question. I want to make a ringtone of a song that is in my iTunes library but does not show up in iTunes when I click that lower right hand thing on garage band. It is like when I open iTunes I see all my music and when I try to import from iTunes to garage band I only can see/chose some of the music.

Any hints?

thanks!
If you drag the song from iTunes to the main window pane of garage band, it will load right up. I usually copy the song to desktop and drag it from there.
 

kokogirl

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#9
If you drag the song from iTunes to the main window pane of garage band, it will load right up. I usually copy the song to desktop and drag it from there.
I will try this. But I do not understand why all the music is in iTunes but garage band is not "seeing" it all.

I will try what you say now. I can't believe I made a ringtone. I feel like a computer expert! lol!

EDIT: I tried it. I guess since I bought the music from iTunes it will not let me import into garageband? Says it is an ACC protected file or something. That sucks. I will just buy CD's again and stop buying music from iTunes, if that is the case.
 

dturner

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#10
I will try this. But I do not understand why all the music is in iTunes but garage band is not "seeing" it all.

I will try what you say now. I can't believe I made a ringtone. I feel like a computer expert! lol!
Not sure why it isn't showing up either. I have a lot of music and really don't know if I have this problem or not. I have always just done the drag thing.
:)
 

dturner

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EDIT: I tried it. I guess since I bought the music from iTunes it will not let me import into garageband? Says it is an ACC protected file or something. That sucks. I will just buy CD's again and stop buying music from iTunes, if that is the case.
That's the problem. Music from iTunes will not work. I have to tell you I was really shocked to see that Apple would let you make ringtones from garage band. All they went through to break apps like ringtone maker and then all of a sudden you can use garage band. If they allow this, why not allow purchased songs? Go figure.
 

kokogirl

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That's the problem. Music from iTunes will not work. I have to tell you I was really shocked to see that Apple would let you make ringtones from garage band. All they went through to break apps like ringtone maker and then all of a sudden you can use garage band. If they allow this, why not allow purchased songs? Go figure.
Because they are money grubbing bastards, I guess.

It was still fun to make the ringtone. I will make more tomorrow!
 

acosmichippo

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aw, that sucks, Koko... i wasn't aware of that issue (hardly ever buy music from iTunes). Maybe that iTunes glitch is worth something, after all. You might want to give that a shot, although it is a little less intuitive.

Glad ya got it working with the other songs, though.
 

kokogirl

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aw, that sucks, Koko... i wasn't aware of that issue (hardly ever buy music from iTunes). Maybe that iTunes glitch is worth something, after all. You might want to give that a shot, although it is a little less intuitive.

Glad ya got it working with the other songs, though.
No problem. I will just go back to buying CD's. I was really tired last so I only made one.

I found a fade out button, but not fade in. Do you have any more tips for us on this? Thanks again! I would never have figured that out on my own!
 

acosmichippo

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yeah, I can post somthing when I get home... been at work all day.
 

Ramesh

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No problem. I will just go back to buying CD's. I was really tired last so I only made one.

I found a fade out button, but not fade in. Do you have any more tips for us on this? Thanks again! I would never have figured that out on my own!
Buy your music from www.amazonmp3.com They are unprotected mp3 files. Also, you can always burn your protected music to cd, and then reimport them as aac or mp3 files. Then it'll work...
 

Lincoln

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Good lord do I want GarageBand '08. I use '06 on a daily basis, and the '08 version so much more productive (and shiny). However, I'm still saving for a new MBP. I also want to buy FinalCut, and iMac to replace the mini, Aperture... Apple gives me too many things to pick from.

- John