White-bearded Manakins are widespread in the lowlands of northern and central South America. There is an isolated population west of the Andes from southwestern Colombia south to extreme northwestern Peru. The range also extends more continuously from northern and eastern Colombia east across southern Venezuela to the Guianas and northeastern Brazil, and south through eastern Ecuador and peru to northeastern Bolivia and central and east central Brazil. White-bearded Manakin is scarce or absent, however, from parts of southwestern Amazonia. White-bearded Manakin also occurs on Trinidad, and from northeastern Brazil south to southeastern Brazil, eastern Paraguay, and northeastern Argentina.
The elevational range of White-bearded Manakin extends from the lowlands up to 1900 m in Colombia, although it usually occurs below 1000 (Hilty and Brown 1986), to 1300 m (but usually below 800 m) in Ecuador (Ridgely and Greenfield 2001a), to 1000 m in Venezuela (Hilty 2003), and to 1000 m in Peru (Schulenberg et al. 2010).