How to Change the New Mail Sound in Windows

For Outlook and Windows Mail

Windows sounds are customized via the Control Panel. Among other system sounds, it's easy to personalize the sound Outlook or Windows Mail makes when a new message arrives. Here's how to add a new mail sound in Windows 10.

Outlook Express and Windows Live Mail have been discontinued, but if you're using one of these legacy email clients, the process is similar.

New email illustration indicating one new message
vladwel / iStock

How to Change the New Mail Sound in Windows

When you change your new mail sound in Windows, use one of the Windows built-in sounds or choose your own custom sound from an audio file.

  1. Close out of Outlook or Windows Mail and open Control Panel.

    Open Control panel on your Windows PC
  2. Type Sound in the Search box.

    Type Sound in the Search box.
  3. Select Change System Sounds.

    Select Change System Sounds.
  4. Select the Sounds tab.

    Select the Sounds tab.
  5. Select New Mail Notification.

    Select New Mail Notification

    In older Windows versions, you'll look under Program Events for New Mail Notification.

  6. Under Sounds, select the drop-down arrow to choose an available Windows sound.

    Under Sounds, select the drop-down arrow to choose an available Windows sound.

    Sounds must be in the WAV audio format, but try a free audio file converter if you want to use an MP3 or another audio format for your new mail sound.

  7. Alternatively, select Browse to choose a custom sound from your files.

    select Browse to choose a custom sound from your files.
  8. Navigate to your sound file, select it, and then select Open to add the sound.

    Select Browse to choose a custom sound from your files.
  9. Once you've made your new mail sound choice, select OK.

    Once you've made your new mail sound choice, select OK.

If You Can't Hear Your New Sound

If you can't hear the new mail sound even after changing it in the Control Panel, your email client may sound permissions disabled.

Go to Outlook or Mail's File > Options menu and select the Mail tab. Under Message arrival, make sure to check Play a sound.

Go to your email client's Mail options and select Play a Sound

If you don't see this option, try the Tools > Options menu, within the General tab, for the Play sound when new messages arrive option. Make sure it's checked.

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