View Full Version : Cell phone music...how do you do it?

03-29-2005, 01:16 PM
I've seen several posts of people working on cell phone midi. Is it possible to make your own? Say I have a song/melody and I want to use it on my phone. What do I need to do to put it on my phone. I've recorded ringtones via the mouthpiece - not the best in terms of clarity. I've got a sprint LG phone (just in case that matters), ProTools LE and Gigastudio 3.

Am I limited to default sounds (general midi), or can I use any instrument I want. I'm very new to this, so any help would be appreciated. If you know of any links where I can read more, I'd appreciate that too. My future plans are to get into making audio for video games, so this would also make good practice for me. Thanks everyone. :) :D :cool:

Rich D
03-29-2005, 02:18 PM
You're limited to whatever general midi bank the phone uses, though if you're wanting to do a ringtone some phones (not sure about yours) do support other formats. Usually though, space is VERY limited, I had a whopping 20k for 7 music cues on the last cell phone game project I scored. Then those had to be converted down to ringtones for the other lower range of phones, went from 20K to around 4k of real estate for my music. As far as getting a midi file on a phone, you just compose a cue in your sequencer, assign each track the GM instrument you want to play, and from there it varies from phone to phone as far as getting the music onto the phone itself.


Joseph Burrell
03-29-2005, 02:20 PM
Please, please, please, please, please, please, pretty bloody please, do not make music for cell phones.


03-29-2005, 02:24 PM
Please, please, please, please, please, please, pretty please, tell me why not? :eek:

I'm just doing it for personal fun and practice...

Joseph Burrell
03-29-2005, 02:26 PM
I'm just messing around. I say it because those tunes that play when a phone rings get on some people (read that 'my) nerves. Hey, if you enjoy it, don't worry 'bout it. :)

Michael Franke
03-29-2005, 02:31 PM
What is wrong with making music for cell phones?? :)

For practice, it would be good to think of a theme and then write for it. Most games that I do need a main title theme which sets the stage for all other midi-based sounds. Most of the time I have to do a title, a short win, and a short lose.

Also keep in mind that if you do move to cell phones that your client is going to want the files as small as possible. So you really cannot make these long, epic pieces (though using "epic" with midi must be an oxymoron).

For writing you can use just about any midi sequencer such as cakewalk. I find that it is best to use more traditional sounds since some phones handle "special" sounds a lot different. Many phones also will not do pitch bends, etc. I hope this helps.


03-29-2005, 02:37 PM
Hey, thanks for the tips, but I have one more question...how does the midi file get into the cell phone? Do I need a special cable that I need to look up in my cell phone manual or use the online features of my phone? Thanks. :)

Michael Franke
03-30-2005, 11:15 AM
I am not too sure how you would get your midi file on the phone since there are a bunch of different brands. Most cell makers let you connect your phone via USB to your computer. Developers usually have software emulators to test each brand, but I am not too sure if they are available for the public.

I would recommend searching for your phone model + midi on google. :)


03-30-2005, 07:08 PM
Depends on the phone really. But for Sprint folks, try the upload app at www.sprintusers.com - that should do the trick.

03-31-2005, 12:13 PM
Hey guys,
I just want to say thanks for all of the support and info I would've never found on my own. I got a usb data cable on it's way and the sprintusers.com looks like a winner for specifics. Thanks everyone. :D