There are 2 different types of jack plates, manually adjustable and electric/hydraulic adjustable. If you fish with same setup every time- then a manual adjustable jack plate is for you. If you fish with different gear then you will need a hydraulic adjustable jack due to the fact it gives you the ability to make quick changes on the fly.
There are a few things to consider when purchasing a jack plate. Motor size, setback needed, and if you want a manual or hydraulic jack. The term setback is in referenced to how far back from the transom the jack plate extends. Plates are generally available in even inch increments (4,6,8,10,12,14), and vary per boat. It is determined on the performance of your boat at current setup. Generally if you need help getting the bow up or not and how much. Essentially the more setback you have the more leverage you get. The prop is the next component you will need to possibly look at it your prop. Once you pick out a jack plate you will change how the boat rides and handles. You can change the pitch and diameter to dial in the amount of hole shot you need. The jack plate will get more of the motor out of the water and more of the hull out of the water providing less drag allowing you to run faster and get on plane quicker.
T-H Marine Atlas jack plates are a great choice for all applications. They are made in the U.S.A. and feature a self contained hydraulic pump system, so no reservoir or lines to install! All of the Atlas jack plates are also drilled for Talon and Power Pole mounting brackets.