We report about preliminary results of the characterization of a new kind of MCP-based detector: a Photon Counting Intensified Active Pixel Sensor (APS). PC-IAPS appears as the natural evolution of the Intensified CCD, maintaining the basic characteristics, but with improved performance in terms of dynamic range, along with some other appealing properties: higher radiation hardness, more compact design, lower requirements on the external electronics, low power consumption. The prototype we realized is currently in an early stage of development. Nevertheless, it allows us to demonstrate the feasibility of the photon counter and to measure some of the basic parameters. Some of the characteristics of the APS, relevant to the use in intensified systems, are analyzed and compared with the CCD ones, demonstrating the potentiality of the new device and allowing us to set the basis of future development.