After a bit more time I still think it is the contrast and colour scheme that are the main areas where there is potential for improvement. I think the posts within a thread have a tendency to blend into one. For instance a quote is a much bolder divide than the actual divider between posts (a thin light grey line). Additionally the rest of the UI (the post reply box for instance) does not really stand out either. While I still think the current scheme is too stark, I think ideally rather than just adjusting the contrast in a uniform manner a big improvement would be to increase the contrast between elements. I think this is a good example from a scheme/contrast pov. http://www.bikeradar.com/forums/viewforum.php?f=40002 It's a forum I frequent and currently find a bit easier on the eyes and more pleasantly legible than this one. In a lot of ways this forum is now better from a functionality POV, but: Non-white background for posts and threads. Subtle alternating background shades with threads and posts within threads, with slightly more distinct divider. UI elements and background contrast with body of the thread. More subtle difference in formatting and fonts between posts, quotes, threads and UI text. ...Make for a more pleasant reading and posting experience in my opinion.