Avatar in WL version 76116, using the Optimising WL for Avs preset, left w/ facelamp, right without.
Avatar in version 76116, region default lighting.
However, one might be disappointed to note that with the latest release, 18.6.76886, with or without local lights avatars look very similar to when they're under the old "flat" lighting from the default viewer (or with atmospheric shaders off), and this effect has been lost. I've been tinkering with presets again (please send in photos or feedback on this, I'd like to hear your opinions on this Windlight release) but lighting still looks discouragingly flat on avs. I plan to attend the next WL session on Tuesday, since I put off downloading the client until just now - I wish I'd done so earlier. My hope is that the WL team will take this into account in their next release. Until then, I will keep using 76116 coupled with Nicholaz EC-1b for my ad photos. IM me if you need help in trying out this setup.
New Windlight (76866) with region default lighting. Note very little difference from the default viewer.
76866 with the Optimising for Avatars preset.
Client Tips for Sales
It's been the season for sales since December, so I thought of putting up a few tips in order to make your shopping experience as painless as possible. Besides stripping down to the basics (primless clothing, no or low-prim hair and no shoes) and turning down all your graphics settings, there are a few steps that you can take:
Under the Client menu (enable the Debug menu with ctrl+alt+D) select Rendering>Types. You'll see a list of types that your client renders. Turn off the types superfluous to your shopping - Sky, Trees, Water, Clouds, Ground, Particles, Sound, Bump.
Most importantly, to cut down on client-side lag disable Character when you've reached a spot where you can cam-shop comfortably. You won't be able to see your avatar, but your client is spared the effort of rendering dozens of other people and their attachments, and you the effort of asking other people to remove their prims. You will have to turn this back on if you need to move around, but the benefit is worth it.
A few people have noted some increases in stability with the Windlight client; one of its features that probably helps a great deal is Avatar Impostors. If you move around a bit while shopping having this is indispensable for reducing client lag. For me, using Nicholaz EC-1a with an older WL version 18.6.75762, with graphics settings at their lowest, impostors on and certain rendering types disabled has proven the most stable setup for high-lag, crowded areas. I didn't crash once at the Last Call sale and I've used it for the runway at fashion shows.
Have a good week :)