AMD is not expected to launch its Phenom II processor until CES 2009 next month, but the Deneb-based chip will be available to distributors before the end of the year. Specifically, according to a report from Fudzilla, distributors will receive the Phenom II 940 at 3GHz and Phenom II 920 at 2.8GHz starting next week.

Almost immediately following their official launch in January, the new processors will become available for purchase and should be compatible with AMD’s older AM2+ motherboards, a move meant to help their adoption on the market. Chips supporting DDR3 memory and AM3 motherboards will arrive roughly a month after the initial launch and are expected to maintain compatibility with AM2+ boards as well.

Whether this new generation of AMD chips will help the company regain some of its popularity in the desktop field remains to be seen. Few details in terms of performance have surfaced to date, though interestingly a thread over at HardOCP forums seems to indicate that at least one lucky gamer was able to snag an AMD Phenom II 940 processor ahead of its release. Check out some early benchmarks and his general impressions here.