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Entirely unsure about a simple discussion forum

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I know discussions of this kind are quite rare here, but: OK, I'm stuck.

I am currently planning to build a German liquorice community (interestingly such a community does not seem to exist yet). While I surely have an idea about structuring the community, I'm totally lost which software to choose.

Required are PHP and MySQL or PostgreSQL, also I'm not willing to pay as I don't intend to make money with it (else, XenForo would surely be my choice). Narrowing down the possible solutions, only five boards have made it into the final round. These two of them are already sorted out due to known issues:

Pro: I have been using phpBB boards since their last 1.x versions, so I pretty much know how to handle them.
Con: phpBB is a main target for spambots, so it needs a lot of maintenance work. I probably can't invest so much time anymore (given that I also have other boards running).
Pro: I also played with that a bit.
Con: Not sure how to explain that... MyBB bores me a bit. I need something different I can dive into.[/list]

Three other contestants are equally interesting. Now I need someone with experiences to tell me which one would be recommended for a probably mid-sized community, discussing about one major topic in a couple of subforums.

I like its feature-richness. Its basic look and feel are a bit oldish, but I guess this can be configured. No idea about possible "Con"s.
Played with this one many years ago. Quite nice (as it's small and configurable) IMO, but I never took the time to run an example configuration yet.
[*]SMF (or one of its forks):
It has a wide community, but development seems to be quite slow these days...? I know DC runs that, although I have no clue why.[/list]

Any clues? I'm lost.

You might try Wordpress (not sure if you've looked at it) with the bbPress plugin.  It integrates with Akisimet to control the spam, so you get a widely supported software product and spam control.  I've used this with buddypress to make a really good community.

I know WordPress rather well, but since bbPress requires a bloated blog system as its base, I'm not entirely sure about that, given that my website runs on WordPress...

It's a plugin to the system to give you forum support on your blog- not a blog that requires wordpress from my estimation.  But I just figured that I'd suggest it.

Well, good suggestion in theory, but, yes, it is a "board for a blog"... I could probably "redirect" that, but then all advantages of it are gone, right?


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