yes and no, it all depends n what you intend to use for that production. in this day and age it's generally a no, that's nowhere near enough. however, as said it depends on what you intend to use software wise
Depends on your workflow and stuff. Probably will be very hard to lunch some serious sample libraries like kontakt. You might be ok, but be prepared to bounce all the stuff and deal directly with audio.
Considering your OS is going to take a massive reserve for itself (even with optimization it's still 700-1200mb instantly gone), you'd be pretty much stuck with very lightweight plugins & soundfonts for that kind of setup. It's still entirely possible to compose some magic with such a setup, just be aware that you'll be unable to run any of the 'heavier solutions' per say and I would strongly advise a minimum of 4GB as a comfortable 'low-end' if you can afford to do so.
If you're sourcing a cheap laptop for composing on-the-go, stay away from Ultrabooks & 2-in-1 systems if you want more bang-for-buck since most of them end up utilising U-Series Intel Chips which drastically reduce performance to keep them low-powered and cool inside of confined spaces. Saying that it depends on how important portability of a Traditional Laptop Chassis vs Very-Thin Ultrabook-styled is for you.
What would you suggest are the minimum requirements for music production? Is 2GB Ram (1.33Ghz processor speed) adequete?
The simple answer is 4GB minimum and 2GHz+.
If you don't use sample playback, then 2GB and a lean OS might just do it for you, but good luck arriving at a lean OS these days. Keep in mind the nicest plugins tend to be taxing on the CPU. Your DAW of choice will be a factor. Renoise or something less mainstream in general will handle limited resources better.
Although I am not an apple fan, but an ipad or even an android tab could be a good choice. Android has limited options still but there are some solid choices like FL and Caustic for getting ideas down. Would probably be a similar price to even a cheap, older laptop.
For basic music production ( meaning you are not using RAM hogs like orchestral simulators ) you can probably get away with 4GB , although you may find its not enough if you are opening many VSTs or loading multiple heavy audio files on a single project .
It also depends on your standard workflow. Do you like to keep things simple and minimal while producing or do you usually end up with 100´s of plugins ,audio files , effects etc.. ?
The more RAM you have the more room you have to keep adding effects , plugins , samples etc.. but on the other hand having less RAM might force you to streamline your creativity and do more with less sort of speak.
In any case I would say that 4GB is the minimum to get things started , 8GB is most likely more than enough for most productions and higher than that is almost always only needed if you regularly use large sample-based instruments or produce complex tracks with a LOT going on.
But a good thing about RAM is that you can simply add more as you need. You can start with 4GB and if down the road you find its insufficient you can upgrade to 8GB and so on ( when buying your unit make sure you know many sticks the RAM is on and the # of slots are available ).
At this point in time due to the amount of ram needed by current OSs I would go 8 plus..4 you can get by as long as you are not using too many sample based plugins or you track freeze bounce often...plus it will depend on your DAW of choice..Reaper tends to be far less intensive in ram usage..
“A composer is a guy who goes around forcing his will on unsuspecting air molecules, often with the assistance of unsuspecting musicians.”Frank Zappa
“Hell is full of musical amateurs.” -George Bernard Shaw
Reaper tends to be far less intensive in ram usage..
This. On an XP system I was able to use Reaper with 768MB of ram...though that was several years ago. I'm currently using it on a Windows 7 crappy Compaq laptop with 6 gigs and it works flawlessly. If you want to run on as little ram as possible go with Reaper.
Anybody can be good at something but it takes real effort to suck as bad as I do.