I finally got an iPhone 4 and decided to create some custom ringtones to try out on it. The first one that I created, using the method we documented in this previous article, is the sound of a dial-up modem connection. After creating the ringtone by converting an MP3 file to an m4a and then renaming then m4a to m4r I attempted to sync the iPhone to iTunes to copy over the new custom ringtone however it was not available in the Ringtone Sounds configuration section on the iPhone 4. After troubleshooting I finally figured out a solution which is documented below.
Custom iPhone 4 Ringtone Not Showing Up In iPhone Ringtone Sounds Settings:
- Delete Original m4a Version: First open iTunes and delete the original version of the custom ringtone you initially created which will be listed in the Music Library on iTunes.
- Remove Sync Ringtones: Now make sure your iPhone is connected to the computer and displaying in the iTunes left navigation menu. Once the iPhone is connected click on the iPhone, then click on the Ringtones tab, and remove the check from Sync Ringtones as shown in the iTunes example image below.
- Sync iPhone To iTunes: After removing all ringtones from being synchronized from the iTunes Ringtone Library to the iPhone click the Sync button to sync the iPhone to iTunes as shown in the below example image. Make sure to wait until the iPhone has finished syncing to proceed to step 4.
- Add Sync Ringtones: While the iPhone is still highlighted in the left navigation and the Ringtones tab is selected put a check back in the Sync Ringtones (make sure the “All ringtones” radio button is selected) check box as shown in the below image.
- Sync iPhone To iTunes Again: Now that the Ringtones are selected to be synchronized again click the Sync button to begin the synchronization process. This time you should see the m4a file being copied from iTunes to the iPhone during the synchronization process.
- Configure iPhone 4 Custom Ringtone: Once the synchronization process is completed detach the iPhone from the USB cable. Activate the custom iPhone ringtone by clicking the Settings icon, clicking Sounds, clicking Ringtone, scrolling to the top of the list of ringtones, and selecting the ringtone of your choice underneath Custom as shown in the below image.
Your custom ringtone will now display and work without issue. There must be some form of conflict if the original file exists in the iPhone’s Music Library and as a Ringtone so be sure to always delete the original m4a file before syncing the m4r ringtone files to the iPhone from iTunes.