Head tension is a major influence in volume and a minor influence in tone. The drum head must be tight enough to allow the strings and bridge to do their work of making sound. Technology allows us to measure the torque on the head bracket bolts. Generally, the bridge should not press down on the head surface more than one-sixteenth of an inch from level on the flat surface. Head thickness of the plastic or skin head is another tone influence. Thin plastic (mylar) allows for a clearer tone. Clear, frosted inside, or frosted outside heads are personal choices. Thicker skin or other synthetic fiber heads make a more mellow or muted tone.
The tailpiece must be a hard metal. The tailpiece should not bend, twist or stretch. Make sure it is attached correctly and sitting firmly on the tension hoop and not touching the head. Some tailpieces have an adjustment screw on the back to keep a slight down pressure on the strings. Too much down pressure or too long a tailpiece will mute the volume.