# What is the benefit of a male output connector on a powersupply?

I saw several power supplies which use a male output connector. For example the Meanwell OWA 90E series uses a XLR 4P or NEUTRIK NC4MX with 2 pins for + and 2 pins for -.

I do not understand why anyone wants to use a plug where pins could be touched and short circuit accidentally. The device itself would not take any damage (short protection: hiccup mode.)

I would expect female contacts which can not be touched or shorted easily.

What feature is worth the risk of accidental contacts on the output?

• All of those have at least one contact shrouded. Is the usage of XLR connectors ideal? Maybe not. Is it chosen to be compatible with existing equipment where the chassis side is usually female? Most likely. – Chris Stratton Aug 31 at 20:41
• They're very uncommon for all the reasons you stated. There must be some niche product where this configuration is preferable. One situation that comes to mind: the male side could be more prone to damage than the female side; and the power supply is easier to replace than the product. Or perhaps the receiving connector on the product will be continuously powered, so the power supply pins are actually the safer of the 2 to expose? Like you said the power supply is short protected so it's not too risky to leave the pins exposed. – Drew Aug 31 at 20:41
• it is unclear what danger you are perceiving – jsotola Aug 31 at 20:45
• I fail to see the danger. – winny Aug 31 at 21:07
• @winny a cheap standard 12V PSU, may have 100V on the output. A SELV/PELV PSU which is connected to mains (CAT II) have to withstand for example 4kV surge without exceeding a save output level. Read about EN 61558-2-6, EN 60204-1, DIN VDE 0100-410 if you are interested in this topic. – Jonas Stein Aug 31 at 21:14