Re-renders with some material tweaks for goodness - first at the traditional 1024px, second at the 34% scale.
From these screenshots, it looks to me like the smaller renders "feel" more like Wing Commander sprites, presumably because at the time, this is how they would have created the original sprites - none of that rendering at high resolution only to scale it down stuff .It may come down to personal preference which people may like. The 1024x1024 renders do lose a little detail but may have a "cleaner" look since it helps to smooth out some jagged edges. The 34% renders on the other hand retain their detail but there may be the occasional jagged edge in there. In theory, the smaller renders could provide better quality since the images don't need to be resized/filtered but it will be important to fine tune their quality.