So far this winter, I have lost 7 of 15 hives that were started last year as packages or splits made with purchased queens.
So far this winter, I have lost 3 nucs (that were weak to begin with) out of 27 nucs and hives from feral stock from swarms, cutouts, overwintered stock, or hives with queens raised from those genetic lines.
All hives have a similar mix of large cell, Pierco, foundationless, and PF small cell frames. (I try to have 3-4 frames of foundationless and small cell in the center of the boxes, but outside frames are often larger cell sizes.)
3 years ago I tried powdered sugar on a couple hives, and decided it wasn't for me. That was the last treatment I did. Almost everyone in my county stopped treating 2 years ago. We are in a fairly isolated area, with minimal exposure to any migratory operations.
From my observations, it appears that genetics are playing a larger role in survival than small cell in my bees. This is not to say that small cell isn't doing anything - it just appears to me that genetics play a larger role in survival.