to me I find it just as the same, then again... I wouldn't feel great if I got called fugly
I've only been called HOT a few times as well as HANDSOME, I used to get called CUTE quite frequently but not any more, now a days I get called good looking, a few days ago I got called MANWHORE by my family...
It sort of depends on the guy, just like it depends on the girl. Personally, I don't really mind either way. I certainly wouldn't object to girls calling me cute. For the majority of guys, though, go with something more masculine than cute, just to be safe. Guys tend to see themselves as having to be masculine and manly to be good looking, not dainty and cute. Handsome, although a bit old-fashioned, is a classic way to tell a guy he's good looking that he will always appreciate. Saying he's hot works also, and most guys will appreciate it.
Actually kind of, most guys take cute as looking less masculine so it is sometimes a bit insulting (depending on the guy) however some of us (like me) kind of enjoy it, but I'd still much rather be called "sexy" or "handsome" or something more masculine yet at the same time doesn't make me feel like a man whore (I think a lot of guys like feeling man whores or as they may put it "pimp"). And as for women, I'd much rather be with and enjoy the sight of a cute one than a "hot" one. Maybe I'm just weird or whatever, but I tend to only have an attraction to cute girls over "hot" ones.