I have asked similar questions before - now I have a bit more info.
I have a number of shaped button components, some freeware, some I have paid for. I have a project which has around 50 buttons and growing and I want to be able to "skin" the buttons a la Winamp or Media Player. For each button I want to define three states with three bitmaps - normal, down, and disabled. I would also like to have a caption.
Now, if I create a test project, add a shaped button and set all the button bitmaps at design time, then replicate the button 49 times, my Windows GDI resources drop from 60% to 50%. If I then run the program (no code, just buttons) the GDI drops to 30%. With some code and other graphic components I start running dangerously low on GDI.
So the question is: Does anyone know of or use a shaped button which doesn't eat GDI? Can such a beast exist or is this type of component bound to do this?
The component does not have to have a "hot" region (ie only respond in the non transparent region) it just has to allow a transparent region to give the button a shape. I think this is the way Media players buttons work.