The new Phenom on the block
We have already looked at the differences between Phenom II and the older K8 architecture, so there is no real reason to go over all of that again. There aren't any major changes to the CPU apart from clock speeds. The default clock of the 965 processor is 3.4GHz with the same cache as the 955 we've already tested. The integrated Northbridge of the 965 runs at the 2GHz level rather than 1.8GHz which the cheaper models are clocked at. This doesn't make for a huge difference, but any increase in speed is a good one.
AMD packages the latest processor in the same 940 pin AM3 socket which makes it fully backwards compatible with the AM2+ motherboards. Something we would like to see AMD finally do is go pinless like Intel; it's generally a fair bit cheaper to replace a board than a CPU if a pin gets bent.