Ringtones, sounds, and volume

Ringtones and sounds can help you decide when to pay attention to your Windows Phone and when to ignore it. Assign unique ringtones to the people who matter most to you. Use different sounds for different kinds of alerts, such as alarms, new text or instant messages, voicemails, emails, reminders, and other notifications.

Also add or create new ringtones from MP3s or other audio files, then use them as custom sounds, or download all kinds of ringtone apps from the Windows Phone Store on your phone—whatever works for you.

Set custom ringtones or text tones for a contact

  1. On Start , tap People
    People Icon
    and then swipe over to Contacts.
  2. Tap the contact you want to assign a tone to.
  3. Tap Edit 
    Edit icon
     and then do one or both of the following:
    • Tap Ringtone, and then tap the ringtone you want to assign.
    • Tap Text tone, and then tap the alert or custom sound you want to assign.

Change any other ringtone or alert

  1. In the App list, tap Settings
    Settings Icon
    > Ringtones + sounds.
  2. Tap the type of ringtone or alert you want to change and then choose the sound you want to use.

Add sound files from your PC

To get sound files from your PC onto your phone, use either the Windows Phone app for the desktop or your PC. See Sync your Windows Phone to learn more about the app, or follow the Add a Ringtone using a Windows PC steps below.

Windows Phone file structure in Windows Explorer

Get more ringtones from your PC

Add a ringtone using a Windows PC

  1. Connect your phone to your PC, then do one of the following:
    • On a Windows 10 PC, click Start, click File explorer, and then click This PC.
    • On a Windows 8.1 PC, click Desktop, click File explorer on the taskbar, and then click This PC.
    • On a Windows 8 PC, click Desktop, click File explorer on the taskbar, and then click Computer.
    • On a Windows 7 PC, click Start, and then click Computer.
  2. Under Devices and drives (Portable Devices on Windows 7), select your phone, select the Phone folder, and then select the Ringtones folder.
  3. Find a sound file on your PC (music files are often in the Music folder and organized by artist and album), and then drag the file into the Ringtones folder.
  4. On your phone, in the App list, go to Settings
    Settings Icon
    > Ringtones + sounds, and then tap Ringtone to see a list of your available ringtones. Your new ringtone will appear under Custom in the list.

Control the volume on your phone

If you're in a place where your beeping, jangling phone could be an embarrassment or an offense, your nifty ringtones may suddenly become less important than the volume buttons. Those buttons make it easy to turn the sound up and down for calls or music and to quickly turn off your ringer.

Turn the ringer on or off using the volume buttons

To turn off the ringer, press and hold the Volume down 

Volume Down Icon
button until you see Vibrate appear at the top of the screen.

To turn on the ringer, press and hold the Volume up 

Volume Up Icon
button until you see Ringer + Notifications.

Adjust volume settings on your screen

Press the Volume up  

Volume Up Icon
or Volume down
Volume Down Icon
button, and then tap Open volume bar 
Expand Icon
to expand your phone's volume options.

Volume bar on Windows Phone 8.1

The volume bar provides quick access to your volume settings from almost anywhere on your phone.

Depending on what you're doing, you'll see one or more of the following:

  • In-call 
    In Call Volume Icon
  • Ringer + Notifications (Tap 
    Ringer Notification Volume Icon
    Silent Mode Icon
    , or 
    Vibrate Icon
    to mute or unmute.)
  • Media + Apps (Tap 
    Media Icon
    Media Mute Icon
    to mute or unmute.)
  • Headphones (Tap 
    Headphone Volume Icon
    to mute or unmute.)
  • Bluetooth (Tap 
    Bluetooth Icon
    to mute or unmute.)

Use the volume slider(s) to adjust the volume accordingly. Below the sliders, you can also toggle your phone's vibrate settings by tapping Vibrate on 

Vibrate Icon
or Vibrate off
Vibrate Icon
. To close the volume bar, tap Close volume bar
Collapse Icon

Change your phone's vibrate settings

  1. In the App list, tap Settings
    Settings Icon
    > Ringtones + sounds.
  2. Turn Vibrate on 
    Toggle On Icon
    or off
    Toggle Off Icon

Article ID: 11672 - Last Review: 17-May-2016 - Revision: 24