It's not as fast and smooth as the current layout. This is subjective, but I just think the current one looks cleaner and nicer, and feels faster. That layout also looks really generic,
I don't get it, what makes you think the current layout is fast and smooth? I have done the tests on my end. the current forum layout uses old outdated images for buttons and such and is slow to load. While the new layout uses modern css3 standards and is faster and has css3 animations for smooth feel. I think you got it backward.
there are probably a ton of forums that look almost exactly the same.
It is a forum you can't expect it to look/work like reddit can you?
The current one is simple, fast, looks great and unique. Why change?
BTW, the new forum is just a skin and few mods, it is the same as the current one in terms of functionality. Both are same just with different colors and so. I can't see any uniqueness in any of them.
It's quite popular here too, why take risks? "If it's not broken don't fix it".
The funny thing is the current forum after the update is actually broken. for example the PM layout, and while in Posting a new thread textbox resizer is broken too, as well as bcc button too, also code selection and jump to navigation is broken too.
There are few new features in the new forum, and they are not just gimmicks either:
1. one click dark theme, it is a unique feature custom built by me, not a part of SMF.
2. WYSIWYG editor, this is a mod integration, much more easier to write.
3. Full screen editor, write distraction free, specially usefull for writing long posts(like this one)
4. Full site integration and notification counter.
5. Code highlight
Now plans for future, When SMF3 will be released, they are planning to release a mobile theme as well. the current forum won't support it since it is not very css3 friendly.
It would be helpful if you could point out the issues or bugs rather than saying you like the current outdated forum look.