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Image changes when opening in Paint.NET and other programs

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Hello all. I've noticed that images look different when I've opened them in Paint.NET or windows Paint compared to viewing them using Windows Photo Viewer. It appears as if the brightness is increased or the colour slightly washed out when opened in a paint program Vs simply viewing the image in Windows. 


When I go to save the file, it retains that changed appearance. So it must be something to do with the programs themselves changing the image rather than graphics card or general display settings. I can never quite get back the same richness the raw image has when viewed outside a paint program.


What's more, bizarrely, I can take a screen grab of the image in Photo Viewer, paste it into paint and it retains the original image. It's just when I open the image directly into a paint program that it looks washed out!


Any ideas?

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Paint.net does not use color profiles when viewing/editing images.  Perhaps your other program is using a color profile to adjust the colors when viewing the image.


Color profiles are typically used to make an image look the same on your monitor as it would look printed on paper.

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You might also have a color profile installed for your monitor. There are some Samsung monitors in particular that always seem to load a bad one by default. Only some applications pay attention to it, and Windows Photo Viewer is one of them.


If you load up the "Color Management" control panel you can look into this. It allows you to add, remove, and change the color profile for your monitor. Whether things look better with or without it is up to you.

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I actually noticed this awhile back with Windows Photo Viewer, too. No clue why, but the colors look different there than anywhere else, which leads me to believe it's Windows Photo Viewer adjusting the colors, not other programs.

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