The carving of the shroud isn't necessary. I've been intending on fabricating a small scoop for that area for a year now, I just haven't gotten around to it.
The drop-in/snorkel delete is simply the least expensive way to reduce throttle lag and add some power. All of the intakes have their pros and cons. I simply wanted better fuel mileage and power, without spending a grip of cash on it. The cons to this specific mod is that it definitely isn't as pretty as any of the others and that it definitely doesn't open up on the top-end as much as the Typhoon or Steeda do.
I'll probably swap in my Newmission box for the trip to FF as it gets better mileage on the interstate. But again, it has benefits that are exclusive to it just the same as it has cons that are exclusive to it.
FocusFest 2013: Best of Show
Gateway FFW: Show Class Outstanding
September '13 ROTM
Hatch Nation #161