Agree, 1+234 is more natural and easier to do.
Carulli's prelude is good, the tricky spots have dead notes, as you mentioned. Also, some damps are missing (measure 9). But the right hand work is very good, consistent and even. I think it is worth the effort to learn this prelude in variation C.
BTW, I find measures 10, 15 most difficult rather than bracketed 9, 16.
Petite etude is great as well, but to make it even more musical I'd do this:
- play measure 6 as legato as possible, keep B ringing the entire measure. Also, use rest-stroke on note B and add some vibrato.
- more rubato in measures 15-16 (tension)