The RDC connection in windows 10 does not reflect the original image (exactly the same pixels)

When connecting via RDC (Remote Desktop Connection) built into Windows 10, the pixels are not reflected 1:1 . This means that the image does not differ at first glance, but when I checked the program, the pixels have a slightly different shade and are not the exact reality of the image. By teamviewer or some other program the picture is 1:1, but why is this happening in RDC? Is there any way to fix this? Yesterday I searched the entire internet for 5 hours and unfortunately I didn't find anything sensational on this topic. I try to change colors of dept to : 15,16,24 and 32bit. But it'ss till the same.

Pictures that presents what am i talking about : on real machine the same color is defferent than color where RDC is visible. I just get cursor on the same pixel inside windows RDC + inside on machine.

IMAAGE shows difference in color pixel

  • If it's the same pixel why are the mouse coordinates different? – DavidPostill Mar 8 '20 at 8:18
  • Because 1st cooridantes are on 1st machine , 2nd coorinates are on 2nd computer where i see Remote Dekstop Connection window(it will be differenet because my desktop main is so much bigger and i dont have full screen window with RDC). But pixel is the same exacly. – Adam Zbudniewek Mar 8 '20 at 8:36

You must have a fully-calibrated setup for this to even vaguely be possible.
No calibration, no chance.

OK, this is going to be a vague answer because the data needed to correctly assess it isn't available.
More detail lower, I actually ran a full calibration test to prove this can be done.

You are dealing with colour handling in a situation that is not colour-managed. I doubt you will improve this without hardware/profiling calibration at both ends of your connection & even then is doubtful.

RDC is sending the colour of the actual pixel as perceived at source, not the colour as managed by either your calibration profile nor the one at the remote machine. The receiver may or may not be interpreting this through its own profile… I would imagine not; it will be leaving that to whatever regular desktop profile you are using, which is unlikely to be accurately calibrated anyway.

If your digital colour meter has variable interpretations, try sRGB & Native. sRGB will be the 'generic' profile the machines think they are using, but requires two conversions, from managed pallet to native, then back to sRGB. Native will report the colour the computer actually "thinks" it is, without any interpretation.
The more accurate your calibration is, the more generations of this two-way sRGB translation you can go through before you start to see colour-shift.

Essentially, it's a scenario never designed to be that accurate; it's a business solution to transmit usable information so one machine can remotely manage another, not an art solution one would use for accurate colour workflow.
If neither screen has been accurately calibrated, then you literally have no clue as to which, if either, is actually the correct colour, nor which, if any, translations have been used between source & recipient.

TL:DR - colour workflow management is one of the most complex structures a computer user has to handle. It is simple [& virtually invisible] once set up, but blindingly confusing to the average user - entire books have been written about it. If you don't have accurate hardware calibration in the first place - which 99 out of 100 computers don't have - then you either have a massive learning curve to go through, or you just accept it for what it is, unmanaged colour… no two people will ever see the same thing.

I decided to investigate this more thoroughly, to see if it in fact could be done with any accuracy over RDC on a fully-calibrated system. The results were far better than I expected.

Native vs sRGB values - on a fully managed system. Images in sRGB. You can also use these to test your browser's compliance - the blue area being measured should be identical on all 6 areas you can see it PLUS should match the colour of the real 'Add Answer' button on this page. If they don't, your calibration is out.

enter image description here

enter image description here

Before I did this next step, I tried the same experiment before calibrating the PC. The results were absolutely terrible - I've simply never cared before because I remote to this PC for Windows testing, not for artwork. I didn't take pictures - perhaps I should have done.

Having just calibrated a Win10 PC [roughly, low quality, fast setting] I have then connected to it over RDC, opened this web page in Chrome & put the Digital Colour Meter over that RDC web page - so this image is a composite.
To the left; Chrome on Win 10 over RDC, showing the sRGB image already posted above; to the right, the current 'live' colour meter on this local machine, measuring the RDC-transmitted image.

It ain't perfect, but it's close [a full calibration would be closer but that would take me an hour] This has now been through maybe 6 different colour-mappings to get thus far, so being only 1 out through that many translations I think is pretty damn good!

enter image description here

  • Exactly this... There are multiple (and different) levels of color-mapping and conversion involved client-side and server-side. For even more fun: Try using an iMac (Retina dscreen) as RDP client and make a RDP connection and a VNC connection to the same Windows PC in parallel so you can compare. Color-difference between RDP en VNC is amzazing. Microsofts RDP client for Mac manages to make enough corrections to make the display look more or less as if you are sitting behind the Windows computer. VNC is either too dark or too light (depending on the video-driver used by the Windows PC). – Tonny Mar 8 '20 at 11:03
  • So to sum up, it is not possible to adjust the received image to be exactly the same as on a streaming computer? Is there any way to do this? I care about this very much, but as I look at it now, I start to doubt after your answer.Or is there any way to stream the image and pick it up exactly as it is? – Adam Zbudniewek Mar 8 '20 at 11:59
  • Are both machines fully hardware calibrated? I mean with a dedicated hardware colorimeter, not by eye. If they're not, that's your first step. RDC is not a colour managed app, so that will get you potentially closer, but is unlikely to ever be completely accurate. I have a PC that is uncalibrated - will take me about 20 mins to calibrate then I can test over RDC... – Tetsujin Mar 8 '20 at 12:02
  • So 1st i need to find any tutorial how to do that , because i never did it before. So if you know how you can check that . I think hardware calirating will to help us in this sitouation , because it will change only color that we see by our eyes , not inside the windows. – Adam Zbudniewek Mar 8 '20 at 12:27
  • OK, I tested this the hard way. I calibrated the PC, remoted to it & used this page as direct comparison. Results added to answer. So, it can be done, if your colour workflow is set up correctly. You didn't answer me as to whether your hardware is properly calibrated, but I can only guess that it isn't. So, that's your first step. Good colorimeters start at about $£€ 250, cheaper ones aren't worth the money. You cannot do this without accurate calibration. – Tetsujin Mar 8 '20 at 12:35

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