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Firstly, @WoodinvilleDan is the only one i know who did a true CAI (into the fender) and did a tune with it, so unless he can post his logs, i dont have an "other side of the coin" to represent.

Many times over, people want a CAI or Short Ram (SR) for the noise and thinking there will be an increase in power. Taking the "well you need a tune" out of the conversation and focusing only on the ambient vs intake air temp argument.

The argument is, "youre just sucking in hot air from the radiator (with a SR)" and the usual response is "not while youre moving".

Not long after i got my car, i pulled the snorkel off of the airbox because its very restrictive and just not needed. This with a K&N, gives you a nice throttle noise and at speed, an increase in power.

So, whether or not you make more power is not the point of this post, its to prove my mod makes a difference at speed, meaning at least 60 mph, because thats usually where i feel the "boost".

This is the extent of my intake mods

Motor vehicle Vehicle Automotive fuel system Automotive exterior Auto part


And here is one of my logs from tonight, notice, at speed, only a 1 degree difference between ambient and intake manifold temp (not airbox). Ambient is 28C and intake is 29C, or 82.4F and 84.2F respectively, or 1.8F difference.

Rectangle Slope Font Parallel Screenshot


So, what does this mean? Well, for one, its not heating up the intake like people would think, even running through a hot radiator with a known max temperature, but its also LOWERING the intake temp the longer and faster you go. This was while under full throttle in 3rd gear, theoretically it should be warming the air since under full throttle, the coolant temp is rising also.
 

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2002 Mazda 6 Luxury Sports
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Interesting, thanks for this. I've also modded my airbox; still have the snorkel but have taken out all the baffles and restrictors inside the upper airbox (where the filter is), and have simply blocked off the hole to the bottom half of the airbox, which is used for sound dampening. This is definitely a noise mod IMO; even a proper CAI would only maybe at best give 1-5HP gain if we're talking a proper one like this which goes down into the fender. Note that they say 11hp gains max, but I don't buy it without a tune as you said.
 
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