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3 Methods to Convert M4A to M4R on Windows/Mac/Online

By Cecilia Hwung | Last Update:

Believe that there are many of you getting bored with the preset iPhone ringtone, and I'm not the only one searching for methods to switch it to my favorite song. As it won't be a problem for you to find free music sites to download, however, the real problem lies in the incompatible audio format. The format available on iPhone ringtone is M4R, so you can not randomly download a piece of music to your iPhone and set it as the ringtone.

If you purchased music albums from iTunes, each song would be an M4A file, but you can easily convert it to M4R and create your own iPhone ringtone. In the following, we recommend you best methods to convert M4A to M4R with zero budget.

Convert MP3 to AAC

Solution 1. How to Convert M4A to M4R on Both Windows and Mac

Best for: Both Windows and Mac users

VideoProc Converter is a piece of all-in-one video processing software with abundant features packed in its suite. With over 370 input formats and 420 output formats, VideoProc Converter can serve as a powerful conversion tool for transcoding between a wide range of media types. Having its powerful hardware acceleration engine built inside, VideoProc Converter can process multiple files in batch and convert them to another format while keeping the original quality. With plenteous features packed in its modular boxes, VideoProc Converter is handy and intuitive than any audio or multifunctional video converter you ever use thus really worth you a try.

Free to download VideoProc Converter on your Windows or Mac computer. After the installation, open it on your desktop and start to convert M4A to M4R:

Step 1. Choose Video to enter the video and audio processing interface.

Video Processing Tool VideoProc
Choose the Video to enter the processing interface

Step 2. Click the +Music button to add M4A songs to the processing panel. You can Ctrl-click and select multiple files. (Sidenote: The file folder can be accepted.) Or, you can add M4A files by simply drag and drop.

Add M4A Files to VideoProc
Click on +Music to import M4A file(s)

Step 3. In the bottom area, choose the Music box, and pick up M4R format.

Choose M4R as the Output Format
Under Music box, choose M4R format


The configuration icon in the top right of format tab is called Codec Option, where you can customize parameters like sample rate, bit rate, etc. to earn better audio quality for your M4R song. When done, hit the Apply to All / Done button.

Step 4. In the right side of the interface, check the high quality engine box. Then, find the Output Folder option, customize a location for your converted M4R file(s). Next, hit the RUN button to initiate the M4A to M4R conversion.

Convert M4A to M4R
Click on RUN to convert M4A to M4R


If you check the Merge box, you will get one complete M4R song with all those clips joined together.

Solution 2. How to Convert M4A to M4R on Windows

Best for: Windows users

As both M4A and M4R are encoded in AAC and there's no transcoding process needed when converting between the two formats, you can simply change the file extension of .m4a to .m4r. If you can't see an extension tail along with any of your file, it is probably that they get hidden away by the Windows. All you need to do is uncover the extension of your M4A file and switch it to M4R. Below are detailed instructions:

Step 1. Open Windows Control Panel. Use the keyboard hotkeys [Win+R] to envoke Run, type in Control Panel command in the Open box > OK.

Run Windows Control Panel
Win+R > type in control panel command

Step 2. Reveal the extension of file types. In the pop-up Control Panel window, choose Appearance and Personalization > File Explorer Options. Under File Explorer Options box, go to View tab > uncheck the Hide extensions for known file types option > click on OK/Apply.

Reveal File Extension
Uncheck hide extensions for known file types

Step 3. Rename M4A to M4R. Locate your M4A file, right click on the mouse, and scroll down to Rename option and change the file.m4a to file.m4r.

When you try to rename the file, a window will pop up asking "If you change a file name extension, the file might become unusable. Are you sure you want to change it?" Click Yes. Then you get a converted M4R audio file saved on your computer.

Solution 3. How to Convert M4A to M4R Online

Zamzar is one online conversion tool that you can use to convert M4A to M4R. It is easy and free to use. Just like what you've learned from VideoProc Converter, you import M4A files, choose the output M4R format, and click the button to convert. The difference is, after the conversion is completed, you need to download the file to your local disc. You can later find and open the M4R file on your computer. However, deficient as most online file converters do, you are limited to a typical file size. Normally, files you import to Zamzar can not excess 50MB.

Convert MP3 to AAC in iTunes
Create AAC Version in iTunes

Visit Zamzar website, and follow steps below:

Step 1. Click on Add Files to import an M4A file to Zamzar.

Step 2. Choose M4R format under Music formats tab.

Step 3. Click on Convert Now to start M4A to M4R.

Step 4. Download the M4R file on your computer.

Have a problem choosing from the three methods mentioned above? Here, we wrap a chart weighing conversion performances between VideoProc Converter, Windows Control Panel, and online converter to help you make a better pick:

  VideoProc Converter Windows Control Panel Zamzar

Ease of use

Intuitive. Only 4 steps needed.

Complex. A lot of commands to remember

Easy. Only 4 steps needed.

Supported File Formats

It well handles hundreds of formats conversion.

It may work for a few formats conversion only.

It supports various formats types.

Audio Quality

1:1 of source quality guaranteed

Risk of quality loss

Risk of quality loss

Conversion in Batch

Conversion Speed




File Size



50MB maximum


The above mentioned are effective ways to convert M4A to M4R. Amongst all solutions provided, VideoProc Converter is one of the best audio conversion tools, with its superb capabilities of converting M4A to M4R and exporting in hi-fidelity stereo audio quality.

After you finish the M4A to M4R conversion, you can use iTunes /Apple Music to sync the song to your iPhone. Tired of iTunes? Another recommending way is to use DearMob iPhone Manager, a smart little program that is designed for storing, managing, and tranferring all types of iOS files. If you want to play M4R songs via a media player, it is worth noting that M4R files are not supported by Windows Media Player, you can rather use iTunes and QuickTime Player to play them anytime your emotion strikes.

About The Author

Cecilia Hwung is the marketing manager of Digiarty Software and the editor-in-chief of the VideoProc team. She pursues common progress with her team and expects to share creative content and useful information with readers. She has a strong interest in copywriting and rich experience in editing tips.

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VideoProc is a primary branch of Digiarty Software that is a leading multimedia software company founded in 2006. It endeavors to provide easier hardware-accelerated video audio editing and conversion solutions. The installed base of the VideoProc product has reached 4.6 million units from 180 countries since its release 5 years ago.

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