I have one on my boat. It does help immensely with exhaust fumes. I personally would not surf without the FAE on a boat with no catalytic converter.
I did not get the expected noise reduction in the boat that others have enjoyed. It's only reduced a bit. Noise behind the boat is hugely reduced. I might need to adjust the pipe angle.
My FAE had a significant manufacturing defect with the support mounting holes being crooked. I was able to compensate due to it shipping with two of the square mounting tubes. As I had it in storage for over two years before installing it, I did not bother the manufacturer about the issue. Just inspect carefully and install promptly if you get one.
Boat performance and wake shape are not affected to any significant degree, at least during normal operations at 10-30 MPH. I haven't really tested top end, but I never cared about that. One thing that is affected is turbulence under the water behind the prop. For surface sports, it's not a problem. If you like to do hydrofoiling, it will be negatively affected for beginners who like to cruise behind the boat. They won't inhale exhaust anymore, but it will be harder to remain steady when directly behind the boat.
The only issue that I had with mounting remaining steady was that I believed my dad instead of the instructions regarding how tight the clamps should be. One pipe fitting came loose while towing the boat on the trailer. This leads to another issue: I think I'll do something to prevent swim platform movement. The FAE hangs on it, and it's got freedom to bounce around a bit.
With a new boat, I would be very keen to get feedback directly from the boat's manufacturer first. There may be an issue of backpressure and catalytic converters that are on most current towboats. Nautique is making the FAE-designed Surf Pipe available as a factory option (http://www.mastercraft.com/teamtalk/...ad.php?t=56874). However, that's not the same product as the main FAE, and there could be a warranty issue on other, newer boats. For a second-hand account, see post #63 here: