I'm a bit confused on a few things in OpenAL.
In DirectMusic I was able to play an infinite amount of sounds out of one sound emitter. I'm used to the idea of a sound emitter being able to emit any number of sounds from any point in 3D space. The emitter limit then is determined by the performance needed and the sound hardware itself.
It seems that the only way to play multiple sounds in OpenAL is to assign separate sources to them. However it appears that these sources align with the number of hardware channels available on the sound hardware. This seems a bit odd since you should be able to play any number of sounds on the available channels. So in OpenAL it appears you can only play as many separate sounds as there are hardware sound channels which is a bit limiting.
Anyone here have any experience with OpenAL who could help me understand how best to use it?
DirectSound/etc use the hardware mixers, while I do not believe OpenAL does. DirectX components will very often implement seamless features so that all hardware looks the same, so you may very well be getting transparent software down-mixing without realizing it.