When baking normal maps in Cycles, the map comes out correct if baked "selected to active", otherwise it comes out too bright and blown-out.

The real problem begins when I try to save the map to PNG, after which even the correct normal map gets brightened and blown-out. The Color Space in the image texture panel also gets changed automatically to sRGB regardless of how I had it set before saving.

This brightened, incorrect normal map CAN be used in blender by setting the color space of the image texture node to "Color" as opposed to the usual "Non-Color Data" associated with normal maps, but it is practically useless for any other application. It certainly does not work in Unity for example.

Has anyone else seen this happen and how would I go about fixing it?

The problem was solved by checking the "Save as render" option on the Save Image page.

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