How to add custom ringtones for Moto X?


You may not know you can add your own phone ringtones and message  notification tones for your Moto X.  It is simple and easy, and it also works for most other Android phones.

Add MP3 files as custom ringtones

To set ringtones, you can go to Settings–Sound–Phone ringtone . You can select the default  ringtones. If the Phone ringtone  is grayed  out, you are very likely in Silent Mode, and you can check the volume settings.

To add your own phone ringtones, you can follow these steps:

  1. prepare the mp3 files to be used as ringtones in your PC
  2. connect your Moto X to the PC with an USB cable
  3. on your PC copy the MP3 files to the folder named Ringtones (under Internal Storage  in your device)
  4. disconnect Moto X from PC

Now, check phone ringtone settings. You should find the newly added music.

Add MP3 files as custom message ringtones (notification tone)

The SMS notification tones (message ringtones) can also be customized.

To set  text message ringtone, start Text messaging,  touch Menu (moto-x-menu)–Settings–Select ringtones.

To add your own message  ringtones (notification tones), you can follow these steps:

  1. prepare the mp3 files to be used as ringtones in your PC
  2. connect your Moto X to the PC with an USB cable
  3. on your PC copy the MP3 files to the folder named Notifications (under Internal Storage  in your device)
  4. disconnect Moto X from PC

Now, check message ringtone settings. You should find the newly added music to select.

Email and Gmail  can also use  the uploaded message ringtones as notification tones.

For Email, go to Menu (moto-x-menu)–Settings–desired email account–Notification settings–Ringtone-the desired tone–OK

For Gmail, go to Menu (moto-x-menu)–Settings–desired Gmail account–Sound & vibrate–Sound–the desired tone–OK

Set custom ringtones  for calls for individual contact

For Moto X, you can assign different ringtones for each contact. To do this, you simply can:

  1. start Contacts (People) app
  2. find the contact you want to assign a non-default ringtone
  3. tap this contact
  4. under Ringtone field, tap Default
  5. select the tone from the list
  6. tap OK.

Are these tips working for you? If you have any questions, please let us know in the comment box below, or start a thread in Moto X Discussion forum.

Enjoy your new ringtones!

More Moto X tips and tricks, and Moto X tutorials on the Moto X How-to Guide page.

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    • Mia says

      IYou can set a tonefor phone, text email – you have to go the the setting in each seperately, however on the moto x sometimes the ringtone changes to one I have not set – I think this may be in some of the apps that ask permission to make adjustments – they just take over and change your settings. Take a good look at what permissions you allow. sounds simple, but mine gets changed like it has a mind of its own. I no longer have control over the phone.

      Try app called Zedge – it allowed me to at least get the file folder called Ringtone visible and start from there. If you do a maintenance or cleaner app, don’t clean off any Zedge items – this will put you back to square one.
      I have spoken to other Samsung owners and on their phone it’s as easy as 1,2,3. The moto seems to be possessed. The manual makes it sound so clear , but it does not work according to instructions. Good luck

      • NateS says

        I just switched from a Samsung to a Moto X yesterday and I had no trouble following the above directions to assign my Zedge Ringtones to my Moto X. It was simple. In other words, my Moto X is NOT possessed. :-)

    • kathy seay says

      Im having alot of trouble setting my Zedge ringtones to my contacts… It’s changing the default on my phone to my contract ringtone.. Any suggestions? I have a Moto E

  1. Joe says

    I tried to save an MP3 file to the Ringtones folder on my Moto X, but I get an error message that says “You can’t save here.
    Please choose another location.”

  2. Will C. Justice says

    Please explain the following statement more:
    “start Contacts app”

    I don’t have that app – where can I get it? All I have is a terrible, nonconfigurable collection of data called People.

    • simon says

      you can install ES file explorer, then copy the ringtone file (usually it is in sdcard0/ringtones folder) to your computer. Once it is in your computer, you can copy it to your Moto X as new ringtone.

    • simon says

      Can you see the folder when you connect your Moto X to a pc with the USB cable?

      You may try to disable developer’s options before connecting to pc.

    • Monica says

      I just figured out after about an hour looking online to get ringtones I downloaded from I have drop box where I store my photos and my resume! I went and added the ringtone to drop box than from the arrow by the ringtone in drop box went to share and added it to SD card than went to the ringtone folder and added it.
      Went to sound in my settings and it was there!! So relieved! I don’t have a computer

      • Monica says

        Sorry I meant I pressed on the ringtone from drop box till it vibrated and popped up a few options.. Went to export and SD card than ringtones from there !!

  3. mia says

    hi all – trying to get the ringtone “Argon” as a phone ringtone – any suggestions? When looking on the PC i cannot find a ringtone folder on the phone.

  4. Mia says

    Hi Mia again. The ringtone sound is already in the phone, under the factory clock alarm settings. (Argon) I have plugged the phone in to my PC and searched every file folder and sub folders to find ringtones. Even did an internal storage search. Not showing any folders as such. I have Sprint service … I consider myself computer literate as I know I could put it in the right folder, I would be able to access it, however; there is no folder titled ringtone. h e l p please.

    I don’t know if I download the ringtone app have it in “record” and play the sound at the same time and where do I disable developers options? This has taken on a life of its own. Thanks again!

  5. Mia says

    Dear Community: I was excited to get into the secret society of developers after clicking my heals 7 times; and yes, you’re right … I still cannot see the ringtone folder when I connect to PC. :(

    Even if I try copying it to an iPhone, then download the ringtone maker as was suggested and copy it back I still won’t be able to access it. Perhaps there is something I am missing? I do appreciate the help though as at least someone is helping me try to get a resolution.

    I will check off the box for a notification if a wizard can figure it out.

    Thanks. Mia
    PS I still love the phone.

  6. Mia says

    Got it!! Downloaded Zedge. Found ringtone which they call Nexus 4 argon. Went into tone, selected it. The choice was once for Zedge when opening it. Then selected notifications, then it allowed me a choice to set as… Then selected phone ringtone. Still don’t see it it the internal storage but it worked. This app has live and stationary wallpapers Cool app a co worker showed me. Thanks again for trying.

  7. Max says

    I am not at all getting file manager option to set custom ringtone, it showing only default ringtones.can you tell me how can i get multiple options.

  8. jody says

    I love moto x! However how do u change text message alerts I’ve trued everything store can’t do it either

    • simon says

      If you are using hangouts as the default messaging app, you need set the notification tone inside hangouts. Tap the menu button, tap settings, tap sms, tap sound to change the notification tone.

  9. Elizabeth Marsch says

    My MotoX does not use the ringtones that I assign to a contact. In the contact, Everything appears to be set, but when the contact calls, the standard tone plays. What trick could I be missing?

  10. Elizabeth Marsch says

    Okay, this is bizarre but true. When I open the call log and access the contact by touching the name bar, the individual ringtone will stick. When I access the contact through the “people” list, it reverts to the standard. I’ve no clue why, but it works.

  11. Ray says

    I’m new to android and I am having a lot of difficulty assigning ringtones to my contacts. I followed the directions in my Moto G manual and also the instructions you have on your site. Even though each contact shows the specific ring tone that assigned, when I get a call from a contact it only plays the default ringtone. I can’t understand why this is so difficult because I’ve had several cell phones and it has always been very easy to assign specific ringtones to a contact. I would appreciate any insight you can give me to get this taken care of. I have only had this phone for less than a week and I am already getting frustrated over this.

  12. Mia says

    Try going into people app, then hit the 3dots for settings and add ringtone. Since this is a moto x forum the moto g may be slightly different also, you may have another app that you have allowed permission to reset your settings. Good luck.

  13. tejmar says

    Thanks all for the replies. I didn’t have any trouble assigning the ringtones. The problem was that even though I had ringtones assigned to contacts they didn’t work when they called. I just heard the default ringtone. From what I read the problem seems to be with google syncing the contacts. I reset my phone and added the contacts manually an now it works the way I want it to. I just have to figure a way to keep google from syncing them again. The problem is that you need a gmail account to do anything on Android phones. I don’t like that.

    • Mia says

      Go to people, find contact , in the upper right corner are 3 dots. Touch and you will see what ringtone is assigned or select another

      • Sheri says

        Forgive my ignorance, this is pretty new to me….When I tap on the dots, it gives me the option of setting a ringtone, but it doesn’t indicate which ringtone is already set for it. And if I touch that option, the highlighted ringtone on the list isn’t even the one set for that particular contact (the default ringtone is highlighted, but it’s not the one that rings through). I must be missing something.

        • simon says

          Tap set ringtone, current ringtone is checked. the default is Default ringtone (system ringtone you set under settings–sound). Choose any ringtones, then tap OK to confirm. Now you can check.

  14. Mia says

    After you touch the dots, select “set ringtone” there will be a blue dot next to the ringtone that is set. Scroll up and down for more sounds. I downloaded an App called Zedge, it has additional ringtones if you don’t like any of the standards that come with the moto x. I found it was extremely easy to set a custom sound, and you can set as a ringtone, notification or email all in one shot. Good luck

  15. Monica Quesnel says

    Like they were saying go to it like your setting the ringtone and it’ll pop up media storage go to that and see which one is set for it. I downloaded the mytinyphone app and it’ll download the ringtones to my phone in the media storage or to the app it’ll pop up when I set a ringtone.

  16. Danielle says

    hi there everyone my question is..
    is there a way that I can set a downloaded tone for my alarm I’m a big fan of True Blood and I downloaded the theme song in hopes to use it as my alarm tone and it doesn’t seem like I can set it up that way and I assure you I’m very high tech and even this is stumping me its making me frustrated!

    • simon says

      As long as you have the music file, you can set it as alarm tone.

      Please follow this guide (it was written for Moto E, but it surely works on Moto X):

      As the guide does not talk about alarm tones, you need know:
      1. the alarm tone is set inside the clock app. Each alarm may have different music. So, do not look for settings under sound.
      2. the simplest way to set it is to put the music file into Alarms folder (not Ringtones folder) in your Moto X. Then choose it from the alarm tone settings.

  17. Monica says

    Danielle have you gone back to my comment about using dropbox? You can set a tone from there and under ‘Alarms’

  18. David says

    Please help! When I connect my MotoX to my computer it displays as a “Media Device”. I am not able to see or access the “Notifications” or “Alarms” folders under Systems. Only a few folders are visible. How can I access these folders to add my MP3 sound flies.

    • simon says

      System folder is not accessible from pc. However, you should be able to access the ringtones folder in the phone storage (SDcard 0)

  19. jim says

    On my older phone ATRIX I had a synthetic voice ringtone that spoke the persons name . can or is that option still available?

  20. Rajashekar says

    I Hav Moto g 1st gen. mobile in this i need to set the cutome ring tone for group contact. I mean that ring tone will play the ring when the group in people called to me it has to play.

    • simon says

      You can only set ringtone for individual contact, not a group, on Moto G. So, you have to set ringtone for each of them (using the same ringtone).

      In people app (or contacts app in Android 5.0 Lollipop), open the contact, tap edit, tap the menu key (3 vertical dots in top right), tap set ringtone.

  21. I12BNRK says

    notification sound files sould be copied to
    \Internal storage\media\audio\notifications

    and new ringtones to
    \Internal storage\Ringtones

    so they will show up in the right default lists.

  22. DonDo says

    HI and thanks for a great thread. I have read many places that one can not set custom ringtones and or text tones/notification sounds for individual contacts on the Moto X 2nd gen and was curious if anyone knew why? I just got one and I am on the wall whether or not I want to keep it seeing this seems like it takes away from the personalization of my device. I am an old school guy that feels it is more important to be able to hear and know by a distinct tone who is texting/calling me and I am baffled that any device company would take that away. The iPhone has maintained it and as I have seen some Samsungs do as well I guess. As well at least the G2 lets you set up different tones for each email account and contact ringtones but not text tones. So my question here is does anyone know of a way one could get the Moto X 2nd gen to do this either through the open developers option or other. Even maybe creating an app that over rides the Motorola settings. Not that anyone really cares but I have printed my return label and am ready to give it up and go back to my G2 but I figured this seemed a good place to maybe get a good answer.

    Thanks I hope someone can help.

    • simon says

      This feature works, as usual. In the contacts app, open the contact, tap edit (pencil icon), tap menu key (3 vertical dots), tap set ringtone.


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