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 – TriSpecs Stereo Bluetooth sunglasses

This product review is going to give you a closer look at the TriSpecs Bluetooth sunglasses.

Bluetooth added to sunglasses is nothing new, but past attempts at making Bluetooth enabled sunglasses usually resulted in something that looked more like a Star Trek prop than a fashion item.

The TriSpecs sunglasses actually look like a normal pair of sunglasses, and the optics are Sola, one of the top of the range glasses made by Carl Zeiss. Of course, since the arms house the electronics, you can easily tell them from “normal” sunglasses.

The Bluetooth portion of the TriSpecs supports handsfree communication as well as stereo Bluetooth. The specs have buttons to control your music and for controlling your call.

To turn the TriSpecs on, you simply pull on the headphone cords, turning them off involves pressing on a small “cord retract button” and pressing the stop button. All controls are accompanied by voice prompts, and the buttons are very easy to locate.

Bluetooth performance is actually very good – stereo audio sounds great, and call quality is very impressive. TriSpecs incorporated some nifty noise canceling technology in the phone portion of their product. By using dual microphones, callers on the other end will barely notice you are on a Bluetooth headset.

Using the TriSpecs with your device is simple – most mobile phones on the market support regular handsfree Bluetooth, and most advanced smartphones add support for Stereo Bluetooth. If you have an iPhone or iPod Touch , you’ll be able to upgrade to Stereo Bluetooth later this year. Owners of an iPod can add Bluetooth to their player with a $50 adapter. When you pick up an incoming call, the headphones can pause the music on your device, and resume playing when you hang up.

TriSpecs are available with 2 different versions of earpieces – normal and in-ear noise isolating. The version I tested was equipped with the noise isolating earpieces, which were most certainly on par with most premium noise isolating earbuds out there.

Charging the headphones is done using MicroUSB, which is quickly becoming the standard charging plug for many major phone makers. Nokia, Motorola and RIM (Blackberry) have already made the switch to MicroUSB.

There is of course one major issue with Bluetooth enabled sunglasses (in fact – all Bluetooth headsets suffer from this) – you run the risk of looking like a bit of a dork. Sunglasses are a pretty personal thing, they are after all a fashion item.

I’ve never been very fashion conscious, and always stuck with the more basic Ray Ban sunglasses, but I’ve got to say that the TriSpecs actually look pretty damn good. The inclusion of the Carl Zeiss lenses make for a very effective pair of glasses. The sunglasses feel very sturdy and sit nice and tight on your head. Of course, for every one person that thinks they look “cool”, there will be one person who wouldn’t be caught dead wearing them.

The product is available in six different colors – black, white, blue, red, silver and gold. The black and white glasses are $199.95, all other colors are $224.99. Once you settle on a color, you can select even more tweaks – including accents, lens color and the earpiece version. A pair of black metallic TriSpecs with the in-ear noise isolating headphones retails for $244.98. Shipping is just under $10.

All in all I’m quite impressed with the TriSpecs. The Bluetooth portion functions very well, and the addition of in-ear noise isolating headphones is a real treat.

In the “minor complaints” department – I would have preferred to see the specs come with a hard case instead of a microfiber pouch.

Other than that, if you find yourself outdoors a lot, and could use a good quality pair of sunglasses with integrated Bluetooth, these are very much worth the investment. Just don’t blame me if people start laughing at you, and remember – turning the volume up will block out their laughter.

And finally, Since I have a face more suited for radio, I’ve added a photo showing the TriSpecs on someone with a face much more suitable for product reviews – Sofia Milos (of CSI:Miami and The Sopranos):