Sun, sand, surf and awesome beach gadgets!

In the “old days”, a trip to the beach involved bringing a folding chair and plenty of sunscreen. Nowadays, that same trip means you’ll need even more sunscreen, but also ways to stay in touch with Twitter, Facebook, Email and the latest news in the Gadling RSS feed.

In this lineup, you’ll find 5 gadgets that can make your beach trip a little more fun, and help keep your gadgets safe from the elements.

Otterbox cases

Lets face it, even though the beach is one of the more relaxing places you’ll find yourself, there are plenty of us that insist on taking the Blackberry, iPhone or other email device along with us. And if there is one thing gadgets hate, it is sun, sand and water. Otterbox is here to protect those gadgets with a full lineup of awesome cases.

Their protection varies from basic, to full body armor with waterproof gaskets. Their mid-range lineup of cases will allow you to take your Blackberry or iPhone to the beach, without worrying about sand clogging your ports.

Price: from $19.95

TriSpecs Bluetooth stereo sunglasses

Look cool and listen to music – the TriSpecs do both. These high quality (Carl Zeiss optics) sunglasses house a pair of Bluetooth headphones, a microphone and music controls. Simply pair the headphones to a compatible Bluetooth device. For a full review of the TriSpecs, click here.

Price: From $199.95

Freestyle MP3 player

If you want music on the beach, but also want to be able to take your player for a dip in the ocean, then check out the Freestyle Audio MP3 player. We took a closer look at this fully submersible device last year.

Not only is the player itself waterproof, the headphones can come swimming with you as well! Included in the package is an arm strap, so you can attach the player to your arm and go our surfing while listening to your favorite tunes!

Price: $89.95

Loksak element-proof transport bags

Last year, Tynan wrote about the Loksak product lineup. Their basic bag is called the aLOKSAK and provides a watertight barrier for your most cherished items.

These are not your household Ziplok bag style container – the aLOKSAK is waterproof up to 200 feet, and is perfect for protecting items like the Amazon Kindle or your iPhone when you enjoy the beach.

Price: from $6.39

Callpod Fueltank

What’s a beach lover to do when halfway through the day, all your gadgets run out of power? The Callpod Fueltank may be able to help you out – its large internal battery and 2 charging ports can fully charge your gadget(s), and keep them running for the rest of the day. Power tips are available for almost every portable gadget out there, and the unit can be recharged using the included AC adapter or the awesome Chargepod.

Price: $69.95

Product review – Freestyle Audio Soundwave MP3 player

Welcome to my review of the Freestyle Audio Soundwave sports MP3 player. The Soundwave differs from most other MP3 device on the market by offering a water and shockproof player.

In this day and age, it is hard to develop an MP3 player that actually does something no other players can offer.

The Soundwave has 2GB of flash memory and comes complete with waterproof headphones, an armband and a “floater” for keeping the player from sinking to the bottom of the ocean, should it fall overboard.

The player has a tiny OLED display which is surprisingly bright. The main portion of the screen is blue, and the equalizer line is yellow. Under the display are 5 rubber buttons for controlling the various features of the player.Because these buttons need to keep water from entering the device, they are actually quite hard to press. The controls bring me to the most disappointing part of the player; controlling this thing is harder than it should be. The basics like skipping tracks work just fine, but controlling the volume or selecting a playlist is actually quite annoying.

The Soundwave MP3 player has an internal battery pack rated for up to 30 hours of playback time and charges using the included USB cable.

Adding music to the Soundwave is as simple as “drag and drop”, so you are not required to use a dedicated media program to transfer songs. The player also supports the Windows Media Player method of transferring files.

Freestyle even provide some basic iTunes support, and they show how to convert and transfer Apple AAC files to the player. Music purchased in the iTunes store will not work on the player and will have to be copied to an audio CD and imported in order to remove the protection.

In addition to regular MP3 files, the Soundwave also supports WMA files and subscription based WMA music.

The Soundwave is not the prettiest player, nor does it have the best interface, but if you often find yourself in need of music in places where a normal MP3 player would not last too long, then the Soundwave is going to be one of your only options.

It is waterproof enough to use for swimming laps, and the included waterproof headphones sound surprisingly good underwater. My test involved sticking my head underwater in the bathtub, which shows how dedicated I am at delivering reliable reviews!

The Freestyle Audio Soundwave costs $89.99 directly from the manufacturer, or as low as $63.80 from