There are numerous ways to make your own ringtones, but most methods can be generalized into one of four categories: online ringtone making services, downloaded ringtone apps, iTunes and full-featured sound-editing programs like Audacity. All four use the same basic steps: open the source audio file, select the portion of the file to be used as a ringtone, save your selection in the right format for your phone, and move the result into the appropriate place on your phone.
Methods of making your own ringtones all share the same basic steps and differ depending upon where the processing actually occurs and how specifically the software is designed for the task at hand. There are many free online ringtone creation sites and apps available for download to your phone. These are usually designed for the specific task of ringtone creation and guide you through choice of the source audio file to selecting the portion of the file to be made into a ringtone to saving the output in the proper format to the right location on your phone.
Ringtones can also be created directly using iTunes on your Mac or PC with the resulting ringtone file pushed out to your iPhone. For those interested in more sophisticated audio editing features, programs like Audacity can be freely downloaded and used to edit sound files far beyond the simple selection of the portion of the file to use as a ringtone. As iTunes and full-featured applications like Audacity are designed for more broad use, they usually require more steps and instructions than online ringtone services and downloadable apps.