Hard to comment I think. I like your first map because it's nice and bright and big and it looks very nice. But I like your second one because it's darker and I liker darker colour schemes with higher contrast. Sphere-ry type maps I can't really comment on. Never really played with those.
If I were to pick one, it'd be the second though I'd change the landmass palette slightly to suit. I'd be interested to see some more local/regional maps though.