I remember enjoying the ABT and Royal Ballet versions many, many years ago (the '60s, I suppose), but I have no memory of specific details, except for the swan boat that carries Odette and Siegried off to heaven in the ABT version. I'm pretty sure the Royal Ballet version at that time was not the one that's on the video with Makarova and Dowell (I love his dancing in it, by the way).
During the 1960's the Royal Ballet had a production by Robert Helpmann that began with a prologue showing Odette being turned into a swan by Rothbart. I think this was the first production to include Ashton's wonderful pas de quatre. Perhaps that’s the version you remember seeing, djb?
Sergeyev also did a version for film with the same idea of a prologue showing Odette's metamorphosis. Its available on video in Russia with Elena Evteyeva and Johnny Markovsky in the leading roles and Valery Panov as the melancholy jester - superb!
For a live performance the best current version is now the Kirov's and the Dowell production at the RB has a good claim to being the worst.
By the way, apart from the Kirov film version I mentioned, I also have a video of Mezentseva and Zaklinsky in the standard Kirov production. Not sure if its available outside of Russia though.