There is no industry-wide standard for assigning colors to the various electrode connections on a potentiostat. Each manufacturer has settled on a different color coding, and some manufacturers, including Pine, have changed color coding schemes over the years. This article attempts to address this confusing subject and bring together what is presently known about potentiostat color codes.

Pine Research Instrumentation (Raleigh, NC) is a spin-off company of Pine Instrument Company (Grove City, PA). These two related companies have used two different color coding standards, both of which are described below. Since 2007, Pine Research Instrumentation has used the “PRI Standard” described below for potentiostats and rotators. Before 2007, an older “PIC Standard” was used, and this too, is described below.

The "PRI Standard" Color Scheme (after 2007)

Pine potentiostats and rotators designed after the year 2007 utilize the following color scheme.


Product examples which use this color scheme include the universal cell cable for the WaveNow USB Potentiostat and the generic cell cable sold with Pine's Student Voltammetry Cell.

The "PIC Standard" Color Scheme (before 2007)

The older model analog bipotentiostats offered by Pine Instrument Company (part numbers AFRDE3, AFRDE4, AFRDE5, and AFCBP1) used the following color scheme. Note that on the AFCBP1 the electrode connections are located along the right side of the front panel. On the earlier models (AFRDE3, AFRDE4, and AFRDE5), the electrode connections were located along the bottom-left of the front panel.


All of the traditional analog bipotentiostats offered by Pine Instrument Company featured a built-in, true analog sweep generator. Additional output signals on the front panels of these instruments permitted the sweep generator and/or the current and voltage signals from either electrode to be used to drive a classic XY pen plotter. These connections appear along the bottom of the front panel of these instruments.

The older model MSR rotators (part numbers AFMSRX and AFMSRXE) used the following color scheme.