How to Find (Or Make) Free Ringtones

If you’ve gotten sick of the ringtones that come with your Android phone or iPhone, it’s easy enough to buy new ones. But before you do that, there are a number of sites where you can get free ringtones. We’ve rounded up some of the best.

Will My Phone Support All Ringtones?

If you own an Android device, things are simple. You can download ringtones to your Android phone directly, since it supports MP3 files as ringtones. You can even create your own custom ringtones for Android if you want.

RELATED: How to Create Custom Ringtones for Your Android Phone

With iPhone, things are a little different. Most of the sites we’ve included in this article let you download MP3 files. But, the iPhone requires ringtones to be in their own AAC format, and they have an .m4r file extension.

You can use MP3 ringtones, but you’ll have to download them to a PC and convert them before you can use them on your iPhone. We’ve got a full guide on adding custom ringtones to your iPhone that covers how to do that conversion in iTunes and then transfer the ringtones to your phone. You can even use that same technique to make ringtones out of your own music or sounds.

RELATED: How to Add Custom Ringtones to Your iPhone

Is Downloading Ringtones from the Internet Safe?

That all depends on where you get them, and which ones you download. There are plenty of shady websites on the Internet that try to lure you in with free ringtones. A good test is to see if the website is full of ads or asks you for money. Another common tactic is that websites will show you some ringtones, but when you click the link, the site tries to download something else. Always pay attention to the file extension to see if you’re downloading the file that you requested. An executable file extension (exe, msi, dmg, apk) is a huge red flag.

Then there is the issue of legality. Most websites have a mix of ringtones, some legal and some not. Obviously, if you’re getting ringtones for songs from the last several decades, they’re probably not not legal, and we would recommend that you stay away from them. It would be safer to buy ringtones like that or, if you already own the song, to make your own ringtone from it.

So, with that out of the way, here are our top websites for downloading ringtones.

Zedge

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Zedge hosts a variety of user-created ringtones. You can search for ringtones on the site, but the site offers no other real organization—there are no categories to browse. As you keep scrolling, more and more ringtones are loaded onto the screen for you to choose from.

You can preview ringtones on the main page or the dedicated ringtone page where you also have the option to download them.

Zedge also offers apps for iOS and Android which surprisingly have better interfaces and let you browse categories.

Notification Sounds

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Notification Sounds is not the typical ringtone website. It’s a place where you can get ringtones similar to the ones you expect to be pre-loaded to your phone by your phone manufacturer.

The ringtones on the website are organized by categories or tags, and there are plenty of both to explore. The handy preview option lets you listen to ringtones quickly, even on mobile devices.

Once you find a ringtone that you like, you can download an MP3 version (for Android devices) or an M4R version (for iPhones). If you have Android, you can download the ringtone directly to your phone. If you have an iPhone, you’ll have to use iTunes to transfer the ringtone to your device.

One thing to keep in mind about Notification Sounds is that most of the ringtones they host are meant to be used for notifications, not ringtones, so they’re pretty short. If you’re looking for ringtones for calls, the selection is more limited.

Melofania

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Melofania is an amazing website for ringtones with a ton of features. Not only can you browse the music of various artists and download their ringtones, but you create ringtones from YouTube videos or even upload your own music.

You can find your favorite ringtones using the search function on the top, and then preview the ringtone on its page. You’ll find a few different variations of the ringtones to choose from. Once you’ve selected a ringtone you like, click the Android or iPhone button and the ringtone for the specific format you need. And once again, Android users can download directly to their phone, but iOS users will need to use their computer and iTunes as an intermediary.

Important Note: As we’ve mentioned, downloading ringtones made from popular songs is infringing on copyright. Therefore we recommend that you use Melofania only for the music that you legally own and have the right to modify and use as a ringtone.

MyTinyPhone

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MyTinyPhone has a gigantic collection of ringtones totaling over half a million. The ringtones are neatly organized into multiple categories like Jazz, Rock, Themes, Voice, Fun, and more—making them easy to browse.

Each ringtone has a star rating and a view count, which makes it quick to filter popular ringtones. One small annoyance, though, is that you can’t just click the big play button shown on the category pages to sample the ringtone. Clicking it takes you to that ringtone’s page, where you can then listen to it. It’s kind of a drag.

Still, it’s worth putting up with for the huge selection and solid categorization. You can download ringtones in either MP3 or M4R format.

Audiko

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Audiko is another popular website that lets you download user-created ringtones. It also lets you create your own ringtones by uploading your favorite songs. On the homepage, you’ll see the most popular ringtones, SMS ringtones, and the top artists in your country. Scroll down a bit and you’ll find links to popular genres that you can check out.

When you open a specific ringtone’s page, you’ll see an option to listen to the tone and its variations. If you like the ringtone, you can click the download button to start the process. Unfortunately, you’ll have to create an account to download ringtones from Audiko, but the upside is that all your downloaded ringtones are saved in your account, and you can download the iOS or Android versions for them anytime you like.

Audiko does have an Android App, which is free to use and does all the things that you can do on the website. A paid iOS app is also available for $0.99, but we suggest you not bother with that. It has the same functionality as the free website, and you’re going to need your computer and iTunes to transfer the ringtone to your iPhone anyway.

Image Credit: Gts/Shutterstock

Yuvraj Wadhwani is a contributor to How-To Geek.