It was love at first sight for me & the Mac 226 brushes many moons ago, when it was released with Blonde, Brunette, Redhead. I'm what you may call a brush whore, especially when the shape isn't something that is readily available. Yes, the 226 is a crease brush, but the original brush tapered in to get in precisely into the crease. The new brush however, is shaped differently. Its fluffier & not as tapered as the original. More like a 226 & 224 had a baby.
TOP: New 226 BOTTOM: Old 226
LEFT: New 226 Right: Old 226
You can clearly see its not the same brush. But I like both. I also read that some people where comparing the new 226 to the Sonia Kashuk Blending brush. So I whipped mine out to compare.
While both brushes look similar the new 226 is a smaller, denser brush. The Sonia Kashuk is fluffier.
You can find the new 226 currently in Mac Stores but not online and while supplies last. You could check for the Old 226 at you local CCO's.
Hope that helps.