The 965 BE is fairly easy to overclock given that you have some sort of aftermarket cooler. If you don't, you may not be able to overclock much past 3.6mhz. I was able to get mine to a stable 4.1mhz with a max temperature or 60c with a Coolermaster Hyper 212+. The phenom II BEs have an unlocked multiplier which means you can probably get an OC of 3.8 without even touching voltages. I'd direct your attention to this brilliant thread: http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/274820-29-black-editi... which I found useful for my first time OCing.
So, I'm curious if the Phenom II CPU will bottleneck he HD 7950. Anybody know whether it will or not?
You will be ok with that cpu. I would look to getting a new cpu in the near future though but if your only using 1920x1080 on a single monitor then you'll be ok mate. Amd has a setting for overclocking your cpu in ccc. Ive never used it though myself but id advise read up first before you try.
I have a 965BE at 4.0 with a coolermaster hyper 212+. Doesn't go past 53 degrees most of the time.
I can only get 4ghz out of my 975 be. I could get 4.3 with my old hyper 212 but changed it for a antec h20. Temps are not as good with the antec and I lost the brackets for my hyper 212. I may go back to air cooling. And maybe learning to maximise my o/c capabilities. I'm not to confident on pushing my cpu's. I'm chicken.
AMD Phenom II x4 965 B.E.
Gigabyte Windforce HD 7950
8Gigs Gskill 1866
I as well went with the Hyper 212
I run dual monitors constantly.
I'm running 3.7Ghz @ 44c , that's while playing World of Tanks on ultra , running teamspeak and Firefox on a seperate screen at the same time.
This might be a more significant example ; I constantly run six EvE clients at the same time with ease.
You don't need to overclock , it's just so darn easy to do with these chips.
The reviews on it by verified owners on NEWEGG says it all imo.
long story short ... The 965 won't bottleneck , period , end of story. now your Ram/MOBO might be another issue :-p