Colors look wonky and more saturated when exporting

I’m trying to edit a piece of gameplay footage in Shotcut and the editing works fine. However, when I export the final video, the output looks wonky, specifically the colors are off.

I’ve taken screenshots of the original input, the editing and the output export video, and I’ve used a colorpicker tool to see the exact differences in the colors, see screenshot in attachement. During editing it’s also slightly different but okay, it’s probably due to the recording software and it’s not really that noticable. But the colors in the export video are really noticeably different from either the original or during editing.

I’ve tried other settings, but the output colors are the same regardless of which export settings I select; H.264 high profile, Mpeg, Youtube etc.

So my question is, how do I get correct colors in the output file? So that it has the same (or at least much closer to) colors as the input file?

I’ve created a test project (1.8 KB) which only displays a color test screen. When I export it to video, then the colors are noticeably different, see image below. In particular pink and red are different even to the naked eye, but others as well when you inspect them with a color picker tool.


You’re practically speaking always going to get some color differences just from color space transforms, let alone conversions back and forth and codecs simplifying colors in order to compress better. That said, loading the project and exporting with (my?) default settings*, I don’t get nearly as extreme a difference;

  • libx264, quality-based VBR, Quality 60%.

edit: I should add… double-check with other video players, just in case either you have VLC display effects changing things, or it’s using a hardware renderer that ends up changing things, etc.

See this possibly related thread about issues with hardware-accelerated decoding used by most media players but not Shotcut:

And @SteeveB is correct about colorspace conversions (RGB in test pattern generator → Y’CbCr in H.264 → decoded → RGB still image capture) may introduce slight differences not to mention using MPEG video levels (16 - 235 for Y’ and 16-240 for CbCr vs. 0-255 for RGB).

Hi folks !
I have this kind of situation with a Shotcut project !
I work with Windows 10 and Shotcut version 20.04.12

There’s a difference between my original video file and the preview/rendered video in Shotcut.
Original :

Preview and rendered :

As you can see it’s very saturated ! and I did’nt put any filter !
Is there a way to fix this ?

These are specs :

Thanks for your help !