Sorry for the late reply, it is a digital zoom but it is very quiet. I wish it was optical too but I don't expect it it to record as well as my Canon S3. But this camera impressed me enough with all it's features that I did purchase it.
I can just snap it to my belt and still have a fully manual, 6X zoom camera with me. For the price~$189.00, it's a lot of camera and like my S3, I think it's a keeper.