It might be you have image enhancement enabled in the Intel graphics driver. Open the Intel graphics utility and go to Advanced Mode, under the Media section make sure Adaptive Contrast Enhancement is disabled, and make sure the other settings are set for "Application Settings".
On the HD4000, Intel enables Adaptive Contrast Enhancement by default, goodness knows why as video looks dreadful with this gimmick turned on. They might do the same on all of them.
Don't know if you'll get to read this as your above reply is almost a year old, but I would like to say a huge thank you for your informative reply!! Yes I was having exactly the same problem with a brand new laptop that I had purchased and to be honest I thought my Windows Media Player was faulty. It's amazing how much difference it makes when you set "Applications Settings". I have spent quite a long time trying to work it out myself and came across another similar article which seemed to match the problems I was having, but unfortunately this particular article did not explain what to do like your article. So again, a huge thank you as I was getting quite annoyed over this but you are my "IT guardian angel"!!
Cheers, mate! Massive respect
I understand you are having problems with the video quality on your system.
As Phil_I mentioned, you can check the image enhancement in the Intel® Graphics and Media Control Panel under Media section make sure Adaptive Contrast Enhancement is disabled, and make sure the other settings are set for "Application Settings".
I suggest you checking this setting and let us know if further assistance is required.