When I met with the friendly CTS guys at the NAMM trade show, they talked up their new 450G series of guitar pots. Compared with the EP086 pots I’m used to, these 450G pots have slightly lower torque when turning. The CTS rep said this is due to less contact surface area on the underside of the pot, as you can see in this photo (EP086 on left, 450G on right).
Another of the primary goals of the new 450G pots is to address part numbering confusion. The rep told me that EP086 is an AllParts number that CTS stamps onto the pot. It’s really a series 450 pot made specially for AllParts, but there’s no cross reference back from EP086 to a CTS part number. The rep told me that CTS builds guitar pots a bit differently than they do commercial/industrial pots, so they internally assign a different 450 part number, built special/custom for the ordering customer. The customer (like AllParts, Mojo, DiMarzio, etc) can have their own part number (like EP086) stamped on the pots. The new 450G series will hopefully help to standardize this part numbering, making it less confusing to the average guitar-geek like you and me 🙂